HC Deb 30 January 1956 vol 548 cc78-9W
89. Mr. Dodds

asked the President of the Board of Trade if he is aware of the concern arising from the sale of British tanks as scrap to Belgian interests, which have since been sold to a Middle East country as potential weapons of war at a large profit; and why, when there is a shortage of steel in this country, they were not retained for our own use.

Mr. Low

I would refer the hon. Member to the statement made by my right hon. and learned Friend the Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs in the course of his reply in the debate on 24th January about the export of surplus war material.

Mr. Swingler

asked the President of the Board of Trade how many applications for licences to export armaments he has received from Effra Limited, Chesterton, Newcastle, Staffordshire; how many have been granted; for what quantities of arms; and for export to what countries.

Mr. P. Thorneycroft

It would not be proper to make public information furnished to my Department by particular firms about their business when they apply for export licences. This has been done exceptionally in the recent White Paper on the Export of Surplus War Material as regards four applications for licences, but this is not a precedent.