HC Deb 17 February 1970 vol 796 cc62-3W
53. Sir G. de Freitas

asked the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what are the relative rates of growth in terms of gross national product for the years 1958 to 1968 or the nearest convenient representational period for the countries of the European Community and for the United Kingdom, from information available to him from international sources.

Mr. Diamond

I am circulating in the OFFICIAL REPORT, a table giving figures for the years 1958–1967; they are based on return made to O.E.C.D. for which 1968 figures are not yet available.

Gross national product at constant (1963) market prices
Average annual percentage increase, 1958–67
Belgium 4.4
France 5.1
Germany 4.8
Italy 5.6
Netherlands 5.0
United Kingdom 3.3

54. Sir G. de Freitas

asked the Chancellor of the Exchequer what, from information available to him from international sources, was the total amount of foreign investment in the European Economic Community and the United Kingdom, respectively, in 1958 and in 1968.

Mr. Diamond

The information available from international sources is incomplete and is not up-to-date, but indicates that in 1967 foreign private investment in the E.E.C. was about 2½ thousand million dollars, about double the level in 1958. Foreign private investment in the United Kingdom in the same years was about 1,030 and 460 million dollars respectively.

Mr. Arthur Lewis

asked the Chancellor of the Exchequer whether he is aware that the Common Market's trade surplus of £750 million in 1968 has fallen to a deficit of £42 million in 1969 and that restrictive measures will have to be introduced to halt inflation; and to what extent these new circumstances will affect Great Britain's position on, and application for, admission into the European Economic Community so far as the United Kingdom's balance of payments is concerned.

Mr. Diamond

The United Kingdom balance of payments has enormously improved over this period and there is every reason to expect this improvement to be maintained. The Government's application for membership of the European Economic Community is unaffected.