HC Deb 21 January 1965 vol 705 cc116-7W
70. Mr. Arthur Lewis

asked the President of the Board of Trade (1) whether he is aware of the adverse trade figures for the month of November; and whether he will make a statement on them;

(2) whether he will make a statement on the December, 1964. trade figures; to what extent the Government's various measures to assist the United Kingdom balance of payments problem have succeeded; and whether he will review the trade position for the calendar year ended December. 1964.

Mr. Redhead

Detailed figures are not yet available for December but the provisional figures show a marked increase in exports and a fall in imports as compared with November. Figures for the fourth quarter taken as a whole indicate that there has been an encouraging recovery in exports and that imports have levelled off. As there have been detailed figures for only one month's trade since the Government first took steps to improve the balance of trade, it is too early to judge their effects. In 1964 as a whole, imports increased by 14 per cent. as compared with 1963 while exports increased by 4 per cent. The trade deficit was greatest in the third quarter of the year but improved in the fourth quarter.