asked the President of the Board of Trade what restrictions exist in the way of quotas at the present time on Dutch imports into Great Britain and British imports into Holland; when the relaxation or abolition of these quotas was last discussed; and what action he intends to take with regard to them in the next 12 months.
Our trade arrangements are now with the Benelux Customs Union, not with Holland alone. Both we and Benelux have liberalised over 94 per cent. of imports from other Western European countries. Talks with Benelux about quotas in the small part of the field still subject to restriction have just taken place and increases for 1958 have been agreed on both sides.
asked the President of the Board of Trade whether he is aware that imported Dutch bulb quota rights are being freely advertised and bought and sold in this country; and whether, in view of the undesirability of allowing some distributors to benefit and some to suffer as a result of this quota scheme, he will consult with the representatives of British bulb growers and bulb distributors and others concerned as to the possibility of evolving some other method of controlling these imports until such time as the quota can be once again abolished.
My right hon. Friend the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food and I have no evidence to suggest that allocations are being offered for sale on a significant scale. If there should be any reason to think that the practice is developing we shall certainly consult the trade.