Steel Tools (Export to South America).

Oral Answers to Questions — Trade and Commerce. – in the House of Commons on 9th June 1942.

Alert me about debates like this

Photo of Mr Herbert Williams Mr Herbert Williams , Croydon South

asked the President of the Board of Trade whether he will authorise the granting of licences to enable the export to South American countries of picks, shovels, hoes, spuds, coffee diggers, and other agricultural and mining tools of (he kind that have been regularly shipped from this country to South American countries?

Photo of Mr Hugh Dalton Mr Hugh Dalton , Bishop Auckland

Exports of these steel tools are subject to the Lend-Lease undertakings of His Majesty's Government. The supply of such goods to South American countries has recently been fully discussed with the United States authorities, and I am satisfied that the United States industry should be able to supply the essential South American requirements. If, however, manufacturers in this country have steel already rolled for making tools and implements for South American countries and only suitable for this purpose, I shall be glad to discuss such cases with the United States authorities.

Photo of Mr Herbert Williams Mr Herbert Williams , Croydon South

Is the Minister aware that many specialised tools are made only in this country because of the enormous variety of tools supplied to different agricultural workers throughout the world?

Photo of Mr Hugh Dalton Mr Hugh Dalton , Bishop Auckland

I know that is the case with some of them, and, as I have already indicated, if there are any firms which have steel already made up into these tools, we shall be glad to take them up. But we must be very careful not to give any opportunity to our enemies to maintain that His Majesty's Government are not faithfully carrying out their international obligations.

Photo of Mr Robert Taylor Mr Robert Taylor , Morpeth

Will my right hon. Friend see that the requirements of the mining industry in this country are the first consideration?

Photo of Mr Hugh Dalton Mr Hugh Dalton , Bishop Auckland

Certainly they are a most important consideration.

Photo of Mr Richard Stokes Mr Richard Stokes , Ipswich

Are we to understand that under Lease-Lend we have virtually handed over our export in iron and steel trade in South America to the United States?

Photo of Mr Hugh Dalton Mr Hugh Dalton , Bishop Auckland

No, Sir. I think that is an undue simplification.

Photo of Mr Thomas Levy Mr Thomas Levy , Elland

Is it not a fact that no decision can be taken in this country about anything without consultation with the United States with regard to export trade, which is so essential?

Photo of Mr Hugh Dalton Mr Hugh Dalton , Bishop Auckland

The hon. Gentleman is perfectly correct in so far as materials are obtained from the United States for the war effort under the Lease-Lend arrangements.