Dutch-Built Ships.

Oral Answers to Questions — Mercantile Marine. – in the House of Commons on 13th December 1938.

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Photo of Captain Arthur Marsden Captain Arthur Marsden , Chertsey

asked the President of the Board of Trade whether he will take steps to ensure that ships built in Holland for British owners will pay a tariff duty on arrival in United Kingdom ports?

Photo of Hon. Oliver Stanley Hon. Oliver Stanley , Westmorland

Ships coming here in the way of trade as actual or prospective carriers of goods or passengers overseas are not regarded as goods liable to duty, but ships which are being added to the commodities of this country would be so regarded. I do not consider that the imposition of a duty on all ships built abroad for British owners would be either practicable or desirable.

Photo of Captain Arthur Marsden Captain Arthur Marsden , Chertsey

In which class would my right hon. Friend place a ship which is built by the Scottish Wholesale Co-operative Society?

Photo of Hon. Oliver Stanley Hon. Oliver Stanley , Westmorland

I have not any idea of the character of the ship which is being built. Unless it is something in the nature of a river tug, it is probably for the carriage of goods.

Viscountess Astor:

Will my right hon. Friend see that the men on the ship will not have to belong to the Labour party before they get a job?

Photo of Sir Louis Smith Sir Louis Smith , Sheffield, Hallam

Does my right hon. Friend realise that the steel plates, of which a great many of these ships that are coming from Holland are made, are free of duty when they come in ships, and that they would have to pay a duty otherwise; and is not this a way in which duties are being avoided?

Photo of Hon. Oliver Stanley Hon. Oliver Stanley , Westmorland

Now that the price of steel plates has been reduced for the next six months, there will be less incentive to do that.

Photo of Mr William Thorne Mr William Thorne , West Ham Plaistow

Would not the shipbuilders in this country be worse off if they were to retaliate on other countries?