Co-Operation with United States.

Oral Answers to Questions — Economic Warfare. – in the House of Commons on 17th February 1942.

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Photo of Mr Samuel Hammersley Mr Samuel Hammersley , Willesden East

asked the Minister of Economic Warfare whether, in reference to cargoes to and from the United States of America, he has been able to arrange a simplification of the navicerts system?

Photo of Mr Ernest Evans Mr Ernest Evans , University of Wales

asked the Minister of Economic Warfare whether he has any further statement to make in regard to co-ordination of effort in economic warfare between His Majesty's Government and the Government of the United States of America?

Photo of Mr Hugh Dalton Mr Hugh Dalton , Bishop Auckland

I am glad to say that the United States Embassy in London is now directly represented, not only on our Black List Committee, but also on our Blockade Committee, which now combines the functions of the former Contraband and Enemy Export Committees. His Majesty's Embassy in Washington is now similarly represented on the appropriate United States Economic Warfare Committees.

As regards the Financial Blockade, there has been the fullest co-operation between our two Governments ever since the issue of the United States Freezing Regulations last July, and such co-operation has become even closer since the United States entry into the war.

No change is contemplated in the Navicert system except for United States exports to destinations in the Navicert area. Cargoes sent to the United States from within the Navicert area must still be covered by a Certificate of Origin or Export Pass, and every ship must still obtain a Ship Navicert at its last port of call before leaving the area.

But as regards cargoes originating in the United States and consigned to any destination within the Navicert area, navicerts will not be required in future. The necessary control will be secured through the United States export licensing system. Ship navicerts will no longer be issued at United States ports, but masters must obtain a certificate, which will be issued on similar conditions, from the United States Collector of Customs. This new arrangement will serve the same purpose as the Navicert system, namely, to prevent cargoes from reaching undesirable or suspect consignees, and to keep the imports of neutral countries in the Navicert area within the permitted quotas. These quotas will be jointly determined and administered in London through the Blockade Committee, on which, as I have said, the United States Government now has full representation. The United States Board of Economic Warfare will issue United States export licences. In the case of exports to destinations within the Navicert area the Board will, before issuing licences, consult my Ministry, who will advise on quotas and the reliability of consignees. The United States Government are sending additional representatives to London to assist the Ambassador in dealing with Economic Warfare matters. I should like to say how much I welcome this latest development in the collaboration of our two Governments, which now covers the whole field of Economic Warfare.

Photo of Mr Samuel Hammersley Mr Samuel Hammersley , Willesden East

While thanking my right hon. Friend for the satisfactory answer, may I inquire whether, either directly or in conjunction with the United States, he is going to make representations with a view to improving the navicerts systems in the South American Republics?

Photo of Mr Hugh Dalton Mr Hugh Dalton , Bishop Auckland

We have naturally kept that under review though I would not admit that it is markedly unsatisfactory.

Photo of Mr Emanuel Shinwell Mr Emanuel Shinwell , Seaham

Does the Minister mean that no more American cargoes will be despatched to the Vichy Government?

Photo of Mr Hugh Dalton Mr Hugh Dalton , Bishop Auckland

No Sir, it has no direct bearing on that very important question.

Photo of Mr Emanuel Shinwell Mr Emanuel Shinwell , Seaham

Has the Minister nothing to say about the despatch of shipments to the Vichy Government?

Photo of Mr Hugh Dalton Mr Hugh Dalton , Bishop Auckland

I shall have something to say if my hon. Friend puts down a Question in the ordinary way. I am answering the Question on the Paper.