§ Mr. Ernie Ross
asked the Chancellor of the Exchequer what are the public sector borrowing requirements of each of the following countries: the United States of America, Japan, West Germany and France; if he will express each of these figures in £ sterling at current exchange rates; and if he will express each of these figures in sterling per head of population.
§ Mr. Lawson
The public sector borrowing requirement, a measure of the public sector's call on financial markets, is not generally compiled by other countries and the data are not available from international sources. The most similar measure available on a consistent basis for all the countries in question is the general Government financial deficit—general Government being central Government plus State and/or local authorities. The latest figures, which are for 1977 and are converted into sterling at the average rates of exchange for 1977, are given below.
GENERAL GOVERNMENT FINANCIAL DEFICIT 1977 Total (£ million) Total per head United States 3,455 16 Japan 15,447 136 West Germany 7,553 123 France 2,733 51
Financial data—National accounts of OECD countries 1960–77 Vol. 2.
Population data—United Nations monthly bulletin of statistics September 1979.