§ Mr. Mikardo
asked the Secretary of State for Trade what actions have been taken since 1st January 1973 by the Governments of France and Italy to restrain certain imports; and what retaliatory actions, if any, were carried out in each case by the Governments of other EEC countries.
§ Mr. Deakins
I have taken this Question to refer to actions taken by the two Governments affecting imports from other EEC member States. There have been two such cases since the beginning of 1973.647W
The first was the Italian Import Deposit Scheme, introduced on 7th May 1974 in accordance with the provisions of Article 108(3) of the Treaty of Rome in order to correct a serious balance of payments deficit. In essence the scheme required importers to place 50 per cent. of the c.i.f. cost of a very wide range of goods on six months' interest-free deposit with the Bank of Italy. The scheme, which was non-discriminatory, was approved by the EEC Commission and no retaliatory action was taken. The measure was abrogated on 24th March this year.
In September the French Government announced a 12 per cent. border tax on imports of Italian table wines. We are not aware that the Italian Government have taken retaliatory action.