§ Mr. J. Hynd
asked the President of the Board of Trade what reduction has been achieved in the arrears of commercial debts owed to this country by Brazil since the October, 1953, Agreement; what is the total amount now outstanding; and what steps are being taken to re-open normal trade with Brazil.
§ Mr. P. Thorneycroft
Commercial debts owed by Brazil to the United Kingdom have been reduced by about £20 million since October last and now stand at approximately £40 million. It is not to be expected that normal trade will be fully restored with Brazil so long as Brazil is in balance of payments difficulties. But the great majority of Brazil's products may be imported into this country without quota restriction, and we are18W also doing our best to re-open normal trade by arranging, as was recently announced, for the Exports Credits Guarantee Department to give a limited cover for exports to Brazil.