HC Deb 11 November 1988 vol 140 c329W
Mr. Alton

To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster if he will make a statement on the provision of credit for Iraq.

Mr. Alan Clark

Since 1983 United Kingdom credits to Iraq supported by ECGD have been provided under successive Government-to-Government protocols negotiated annually.

The Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster recently attended the United Kingdom-Iraq joint commission meeting in Baghdad where he signed, on 7 November, a new protocol setting out the arrangements for ECGD-supported credits for contracts to be placed in 1989. These will total £340 million, of which up to £75 million will be used for Iraqi imports of pharmaceuticals, medical appliances, baby food etc., whilst the balance will be used to finance capital projects and imports of machinery and services for the Iraqi development programme.

Outside these arrangements ECGD cover for short term credits on 180–360 day terms continues to be available.

The provision of ECGD support for United Kingdom exports is based on a commercial assessment of the risks involved and is a normal part of our trading relationship with a credit-worthy country.