That, for the purposes of any Act of the present Session to authorise the Secretary of State to enter into certain agreements relating to overseas enterprises, and in particular to investment overseas, and to amend the Export Guarantees Act 1968, it is expedient to authorise any increase in the sums which under section 9 of the Export Guarantees Act 1968 are payable out of money provided by Parliament, or chargeable on and payable out of the Consolidated Fund, being an increase attributable to the amendment of section 4(1) of the said Act by increasing the limit on commitments under section 2 of that Act to £6,000 million.—[Mr. Anthony Grant.].
For 12 years I have been urging that a Bill of this kind should be brought before the House, and belatedly I welcome it. I also welcome the means of providing the money for it. It took seven years to get the top-up for overseas service pensions. This matter has taken another rive years—two successive Governments—but all the same I welcome it.
I ask the Under-Secretary of State, as this is a business proposition and as we are discussing money at the present time, to bear in mind that the 1 per cent. premium which is to be considered as the overall premium should be variable and that it is no use making the E.C.G.D. and the advisory committee merely a post office. It must depend upon the treatment that various countries give to existing investment overseas. After all, it is a business as well as an aid proposition.
I believe in private enterprise and in partnership between capitalists here and in developing countries. I believe in partnership between owners of capital in this country and owners of local capital overseas. We will benefit everybody. It will be a pay off to people in the developing countries and to us in mutual profit. Therefore, I commend the Resolution to the House.