§ 93. Mr. John Wells
asked the Secretary of State for Defence what has been the cost to public funds of the Royal Naval Volunteer Supplementary Reserve in each year of the last six years; how many officers have been on this Reserve in each year; and how much has been contributed in total each year in cash by these officers towards the running expenses of this Reserve.25W
§ Mr. Mayhew
The Royal Naval Volunteer Supplementary Reserve has cost public funds about £4,000 a year over the last six years. Direct new entrants to the Reserve pay mess bills and travelling costs for training, but apart from this no member of the Reserve is required by the Navy Department to contribute out of his own pocket towards running costs and so I can give no answer to the last part of the question.
During the last six years the numbers in the Reserve have declined from 7,000 in January, 1959 to under 2,000 today, the intervening January totals being 5,350, 3,440, 3,040, 2,147 and 2,157. I have therefore been forced to give careful consideration to the future of the Reserve, and I have come to the conclusion that, having splendidly fulfilled its mission, it should disband now with ceremony rather than fade ingloriously away. I know that many will share my regret at this decision. The Reserve has given sterling service since 1936 and the part played by its officers in the last war was beyond praise; but we cannot now foresee a useful rôle for the Reserve in a future war.
A number of the present R.N.V.S.R. officers will be offered places in the R.N.R. where they will be warmly welcomed; and if the R.N.V.S.R. units care to form their own officers' association they can be sure of every encouragement from the Navy Department.
UNITED KINGDOM TRADE WITH LATIN AMERICAN COUNTRIES* Year U.K. imports (c.i.f.) U.K. share of exports from Latin America U.K. exports+ re-exports (f.o.b.) U.K. share of imports into Latin America £ million Per cent. £ million Per cent. 1954 … … 224.4 7.6 118.9 4.7 1955 … … 239.4 7.4 114.8 4.6 1956 … … 270.8 8.2 135.8 4.6 1957 … … 345.7 9.5 165.8 5.2 1958 … … 295.1 8.3 152.4 5.3 1959 … … 321.1 8.5 156.1 5.6 1960 … … 310.1 8.7 172.9 5.8 1961 … … 278.5 8.2 168.3 5.8 1962 … … 297.7 7.8 163.1 5.4 1963 … … 298.8 7.5 144.2 5.4 1964 … … 295.6 not available 153.3 not available *Comprises Cuba, Republic of Hayti, Dominican Republic, Mexico, Guatemala, Honduras (not British), El Salvador, Nicaragua, Costa Rica, Colombia, Panama (including Canal Zone), Venezuela, Ecuador, Puru, Chile, Brazil, Uruguay, Bolivia, Argentine Republic, Paraguay.