§ 62. Mr. Kennedy
asked the President of the Board of Trade the number and value of German motor vehicles imported into this country during 1938?
§ Mr. Stanley
During the year 1938, total imports into the United Kingdom of new private motor cars consigned from Germany numbered 3,367, the declared value being £327,000. Of these, 3,183, valued at £286,000, were imported during the first four months of the year. The number of new commercial vehicles imported from Germany during 1938 was 137, valued at £17,000.
§ 63. Mr. Kennedy
asked the President of the Board of Trade whether he is aware that plans are being prepared for an intensified output of cheap German motor cars for export; that the production of the cars will be heavily subsidised; that negotiations are now proceeding between motor interests in this country and the officials of the Government factory in Brunswick concerning a supply to this country of the subsidised car; and whether any action is to be taken by prohibition or otherwise to protect the interests of British producers against a form of competition likely to lower the output of British cars and the standard of life of British workers?
§ 65. Mr. Hepworth
asked the President of the Board of Trade whether his attention has been called to the proposal to increase the sales of cheap German motor cars in this country; whether the British 1544 motor industry has yet taken any advantage of the additional facilities with regard to production placed at their disposal in the Finance Act, 1938; and whether the British motor industry will be represented in the forthcoming trade talks between British and German industries as a whole?
§ Mr. Stanley
My attention has been drawn to a newspaper report of proposals for the export of cheap German motor cars to this country in 1941, but I am not in a position to confirm it. It is open to the motor manufacturing interests in this country to apply to the Import Duties Advisory Committee for further protection, but up to the present the committee have not given notice of any such application. I am not yet in a position to say which particular British and German industries will be represented in the forthcoming discussions.
§ Mr. Cartland
Is it not a fact that the motor industry could not apply to the Import Duties Advisory Committee until after the imports take place, and is not this a form of competition that ought to be met before it becomes serious?
§ Mr. Stanley
My hon. Friend's question is a little premature in view of the fact that the cars have not yet been produced, and I understand that at the very earliest they cannot be exported for two years.