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Trade with Russia and China

Oral Answers to Questions — Four-Power Statement on Nuclear Test Explosions – in the House of Commons at 12:00 am on 3rd July 1957.

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Photo of Mr Stephen Swingler Mr Stephen Swingler , Newcastle-under-Lyme 12:00 am, 3rd July 1957

asked the Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs how far, following the unification of the Soviet and Chinese embargo lists, it is still his policy to make exceptions to the export embargo in appropriate circumstances.

Photo of Mr Ian Harvey Mr Ian Harvey , Harrow East

Our use of the exceptions procedure for exports of goods under embargo for China up to 30th May, 1957, applied to items which were not restricted for export to the Soviet bloc. There is no comparable procedure for items on the Soviet bloc list, with which the China list has now been equated. As my right hon. and learned Friend explained on 13th May, no exceptions have been made to permit the export of embargoed goods on the Soviet bloc list unless the circumstances were very special or only trifling amounts were involved.

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

Would not the Joint Under-Secretary of State agree that the exceptions procedure has been very valuable in maintaining some flexibility in the development of trade and in negotiations in the case of the China list? Would it not be a good thing, considering that many items on the list are not commonly regarded as military items at all, to extend this procedure now in relation to both the Soviet Union list and the China list?

Photo of Mr Ian Harvey Mr Ian Harvey , Harrow East

The Soviet bloc list was drastically curtailed in 1954, and carefully drawn up, and I do not think that at this point there is any necessity to make use of that procedure.