Bagpipes

Oral Answers to Questions — Trade and Commerce – in the House of Commons at 12:00 am on 16th May 1963.

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Photo of Mr James Dempsey Mr James Dempsey , Coatbridge and Airdrie 12:00 am, 16th May 1963

asked the President of the Board of Trade what was the total value of bagpipes imported into the United Kingdom in the last three years: and what were the countries of origin.

Photo of Mr Alan Green Mr Alan Green , Preston South

Imports of bagpipes are not separately distinguished in the trade statistics.

Photo of Mr James Dempsey Mr James Dempsey , Coatbridge and Airdrie

Is the Minister aware that one would expect more wind in his reply that that? Would not it be fair, with an instrument of this nature, to make a separate record to indicate the way in which foreign competition is affecting industries in Scotland which manufacture bagpipes? In view of the state of the Scottish economy, should not the Board of Trade do everything in its power to encourage the production and manufacture of these instruments in Scotland?

Photo of Mr Alan Green Mr Alan Green , Preston South

I would be the last person to decry the importance of the manufacture of these musical instruments to Scotland. If a request were made by the industry for a separate heading, this would be considered, but it is very unlikely that the scope of the trade would be sufficient to warrant this. Perhaps the hon. Gentleman would care to bear in mind that musical instruments are one of the very few categories of goods which are dutiable when imported from the Preference Area, so in fact these instruments have some form of tariff protection if imported from the Commonwealth.