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Bicycle Exports

Oral Answers to Questions — Trade and Commerce – in the House of Commons at 12:00 am on 9th May 1957.

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Photo of Mr Stephen Swingler Mr Stephen Swingler , Newcastle-under-Lyme 12:00 am, 9th May 1957

asked the President of the Board of Trade why British bicycle exports have fallen in the last two years; and what action he is taking to increase them.

Photo of Mr David Eccles Mr David Eccles , Chippenham

Exports of bicycles have dropped because of local manufacture coupled with import restrictions and increased competition. The industry is making vigorous efforts to increase its exports. In this it can rely on all the help which my Department can give.

Photo of Mr Stephen Swingler Mr Stephen Swingler , Newcastle-under-Lyme

Is not one of the strongest reasons the increasing popularity of foreign-made powered cycles or "mopeds"? Is not one of the reasons for this the Government's refusal to ratify the Annexe to the Traffic Convention of 1949? Will he enter into consultations with the Minister of Transport on this question, because this seems to be the only means of stimulating cycle exports from this country?

Photo of Mr David Eccles Mr David Eccles , Chippenham

Yes, I will, but I understand that the exports of heavy bicycles may increase.

Photo of Mr Julian Snow Mr Julian Snow , Lichfield and Tamworth

Is the right hon. Gentleman aware that his Department for Overseas Trade needs a very good shake-up indeed? Is he aware that there is case after case on the records of his Department of the mishandling of export inquiries? Will he give this matter his earliest and immediate attention?

Photo of Mr David Eccles Mr David Eccles , Chippenham

I am not aware of that.