§ 83. Sir BURTON CHADWICK
asked the Parliamentary Secretary to the Shipping Controller whether the contract for the sale of the Chepstow shipyards has now been signed; whether the syndicate concerned in the purchase of 34 these yards has withdrawn its request for the rescission of the sale; and whether it has also withdrawn the statement made to the effect that the original agreement to purchase was arrived at on an understanding that the Government proposed to abolish the excess profits duty?
§ The PARLIAMENTARY SECRETARY to the MINISTRY of SHIPPING (Colonel Leslie Wilson)
The heads of agreement for the purchase of these yards have been signed, and I hope the contract will be completed and signed in a short time. As I stated on the 13th June in reply to my hon. Friend, a request for the rescission of the contract has been received. This request has now been withdrawn, and I have received a letter from the syndicate concerned acknowledging that there was a misunderstanding on the question of the Excess Profits Duty. I should like to make it clear that there was no misunderstanding on the part of the Ministry, and to repeat what I have said in the House before,; that no kind of undertaking direct or indirect was given by the Shipping Controller or myself during the negotiations for the sale that the Excess Profits Duty would be either reduced or abolished.