Discussions with the Japanese Government about the inclusion of Hong Kong in the Japanese Generalised Preference Scheme have taken place on various occasions during the past year, and my right hon. Friend has personally made clear to the Japanese Government his concern that Hong Kong should be included on a basis of equity with her close competitors.
Will my hon. Friend confirm, as previously indicated, that it is the intention of the Japanese to include Hong Kong from 1st April next? Also, is he satisfied that the Japanese will make the scope of the scheme sufficiently wide to make it worth while from Hong Kong's point of view?
The final shape of the Japanese offer to Hong Kong has, apparently, not yet been formulated, but the date for inclusion is expected to be around the beginning of April. We hope that the arrangements that Japan makes will mean that the scheme is really beneficial to Hong Kong.