It is not possible to quantify the difference in invisible earnings likely to arise from the different method of financing overseas direct investment resulting from the controls imposed since 1964. All I can say is that such investment is at present running at about twice the rate it was in 1963 and 1964.
Was not the favourable balance of payments aided greatly by the overseas investment made in and before 1964? Surely the right hon. Gentleman should endeavour to measure the loss that we shall suffer due to restrictions imposed upon this valuable source of invisible earnings in future?
I am sure that the hon. Gentleman could not have heard my reply. I am saying that, compared with 1963 and 1964, investment of this kind is running at about twice the rate.
Since, from the Government's own figures, it appears that portfolio investment abroad last year by United Kingdom residents was only £2 million compared with £233 million the year before, does not the right hon. Gentleman anticipate some falling off in income from this source?
The hon. Gentleman is now talking about portfolio investment which has produced, as a result of the 25 per cent. surrender scheme, an annual benefit to the reserves of the order of 200 million dollars to 250 million dollars a year. That is very substantial assistance to the balance of payments which must cause hon. Gentlemen opposite to rejoice, as we have all observed. I recognise that there will be a falling off in future earnings as a result, but the immediate benefit is very considerable and the falling off very small in the early stages.