28. Sir J. D. REES
asked the Under-Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs whether any list is maintained at the Foreign Office of public servants, on the active or retired lists, who have qualified as interpreters in various languages by the official tests; and, if not, in what manner the money spent in rewards is recouped or made of advantage to the taxpayer by the use made of such qualified interpreters?
The UNDER-SECRETARY of STATE for FOREIGN AFFAIRS (Mr. Harms-worth)
I understand the hon. Member's question to refer to the system of qualification as interpreters, which is, I believe, in force in the Army, Navy and Indian Civil Service. The same system is not followed as regards the services under the Foreign Office, but certain allowances are granted to members of the Diplomatic Service who have passed an examination showing that they possess a competent knowledge of Russian, Turkish, Persian, Arabic, Japanese, Chinese or Amharic language, while serving where such language is vernacular.