Yes, Sir. There will be published to-morrow morning a statement of principles on the establishment of an International Monetary Fund which is the result of study at the expert level and in no way commits the Governments concerned. A Debate on the matter will be arranged at the first convenient opportunity. I should, of course, have wished to communicate this document in the first instance to the House. It was necessary, however, to arrange for simultaneous publication here and in the United States and in view of arrangements in the United States this publication was necessary tomorrow when the House is not sitting. A White Paper containing the text of the joint statement by the experts will be available in the Vote Office at 10 a.m. to-morrow. I must ask the indulgence of the House for a procedure which was inevitable, in view of the Congressional time-table in the United States, and the difference of time between the two countries.
This statement of principles which has been agreed was discussed in the first instance among experts, not confined to those of the United States and this country. Dominion experts took part in the first instance. Then there were discussions between experts of the United States and this country and, subsequent to that, there were discussions between experts of the Dominions and of this country, and I believe also there were certain talks on the other side of the Atlantic with representatives of other nations. But it is definitely a technical and expert statement which does not commit any of the Governments concerned, and it is being published with a view to wider discussion.
The right hon. Gentleman says the Government are not committed to the principles, but have they in fact accepted the principles? There is a difference. Has there been any acceptance of the principles?
No, there has not. I have been perfectly frank with the House at all stages. There has been no acceptance by the Government of the principles. The Government have known, of course, of the work that was being done. This is a plan which has been framed by experts, and the Government are free to examine it without any sort of commitment, and that freedom extends not only to this Government but to the Government of the United States.
Can the right hon. Gentleman give any indication what the Government propose to do, now that the principles have been agreed by experts of the United Kingdom and the United States? How do they propose to implement this agreement on principles, after consultation with the House?
It would be wrong to say that there is authoritative agreement on principles. There has been agreement in the drawing up of a document. I think the hon. Member will get some further light on the position of the Government when he sees the statement on principles, because a foreword has been included defining quite clearly the position that the Government take up. I have indicated that the Government would wish to provide facilities for a Debate at the earliest convenient opportunity.
Will the Government, when the Debate takes place, have come to any conclusion and will they put their views before the House; or is the Debate intended to enable the Government to know the views of the House, and then come to a conclusion?
Is there anything in these principles of currency which will stop the hitherto uninterrupted flow of currency into the hands of the wasteful parasites of this country?
When the moment comes when these proposals can be discussed, will the House be in possession of any information as to how they are considered by the British Dominion Ministers?
I have said in the clearest possible terms that at two quite definite stages in the evolution of this matter, representatives of the Dominions have been taken into consultation.