HC Deb 16 December 1948 vol 459 cc195-6W
97. Mr. Teeling

asked the President of the Board of Trade whether he can give the number of British traders in Tokyo at the present time who are there to stay and require offices; how far these numbers have increased in the last three months; and how far have their housing and office requirements been satisfied.

Mr. H. Wilson

On 10th December there were 76 business representatives of United Kingdom firms or branches of firms, including banking, shipping, insurance and trading interests who have applied for and have Obtained from the Supreme Commander of the Allied Powers licences—known as semi-permanent licences—to remain indefinitely in Japan. This compares with 52 three months ago.

Generally speaking, office space at present available in Japan for foreign traders is inadequate, but as the hon. Member was informed yesterday by my right hon. Friend the Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs, it is expected that the situation will be eased next month. The housing position is somewhat better than it was, although there are still a number of business representatives of United Kingdom firms, who have "semi-permanent" licences and who therefore require "private residences," living in the commercial hotels provided by the Japanese.