HC Deb 10 February 1954 vol 523 cc1258-324

7.15 p.m.

Mr. Harold Wilson (Huyton)

I beg to move,

That this House, while accepting the principle that Colonial Territories should not be forced to buy British goods when it is contrary to their interest, regrets the action of Her Majesty's Government in entering into a trade agreement with the Japanese Government without prior consultation with the industries concerned, and without securing assurances that Japanese exporters will not revert to previous unfair trade practices.

It is inevitable, and natural, that when Anglo-Japanese relations are debated there is a danger that feelings may be roused by thoughts of the behaviour of Japanese nationals, not only before the wax, but during the war. I hope that this evening we shall be able to avoid giving expression to any nationalist or racial feelings at all and that we shall be able to look at this question as a straight question of economic dealing.

Before coming to the details of the Agreement, which, of course, has not been published—we can only rely on what we have read in the Press—I think there are two principles which ought to be stated and on which I am quite sure the whole House will agree. In the first place, I think we would all agree that Colonial Territories should not be made to buy British goods when it is contrary to their economic interests to do so. That thought finds expression in our Motion. It is, I think, against our ideas of trusteeship of the Colonies that we should use the Colonies as a dumping ground or a safe protected market for British manufactures just because they are British manufactures.

As far as the textile industries are concerned, I am sure we all agree that Lancashire's only protection, in the long run, against competition from other countries, whether wage competition or not, lies in the efforts she makes to reach the highest possible level of efficiency, not only in production but also in marketing. That, of course, was the subject to which the late Sir Stafford Cripps and I, in later years, devoted so much time during the period in which the Labour Government were in office.

The tragedy of the Agreement which we are debating tonight is that just as Lancashire—I should say to my hon. Friend the Member for Stalybridge and Hyde (Mr. Blackburn) that when I use the word "Lancashire" I mean Lancashire and Cheshire—was beginning to undertake the changes that were necessary we were met with these abrupt reversals of Government policy, creating new uncertainty and new unsettlement in the industry. I shall return to that matter later.

Secondly, I think the House will accept that Japanese payments are in a mess. Certainly none of us, on either side, wants to balance world trade, or any part of world trade, on the basis of the lowest common denominator of restricted imports and restricted exports. As far as general principles are concerned, we give those to the Government. Now to come to the case against the Government.

The first point dealt with in the Motion relates to consultations and the first indictment is that the Government are guilty, to use the words that were quoted in the "Manchester Guardian"—which, itself, was originally a supporter of this Agreement— of tearing up 20 years of British fiscal policy without consulting anyone outside the narrow ring of Treasury officials. The whole House knows that this Agreement has given rise to violent criticism in Lancashire. I do not need to list all the organisations which have been clamouring at the door of the President of the Board of Trade—the Federation of Master Cotton Spinners, the Overseas Trade Committee of the Cotton Board, the Legislative Council of the United Textile Factory Workers' Association and the rest. One of the reasons for their strong feelings is that there was no prior consultation before this major reversal of policy took place.

Even after the Agreement has been signed Lancashire does not know what it is all about. That was the burden of the decision of the Cotton Board conference last Friday, when they decided to press for details of what is happening. I quote the "Manchester Guardian" again, a paper, I repeat, friendly to the Agreement, or which had begun by being friendly, until we began to drag more out of the Government, when even the "Manchester Guardian "was able to see what a bad Agreement it was. It stated: Here is an agreement negotiated in secret, vitally affecting British industries, that is put through without consultation with them. Even now we do not know its implications fully. The cotton trade organisations yesterday—a week after the signature of the agreement—have to ask for details of how the £200 million worth of Japanese export trade is to be divided market by market. There has been hole-and-corner work in Whitehall. Yesterday, when the President of the Board of Trade finally had to receive a deputation from Lancashire—he will find now that he will spend a lot more time receiving deputations than if he had consulted the industry before the Agreement was made—the manufacturers went away disappointed, I understand, with their interview. They could get no answer to their representations from the President because he was apparently reserving himself for a major speech here tonight.

It is right to refer to one point made by the Economic Secretary to the Treasury when he answered a Private Notice Question on this matter last week. His attempt to plead in aid the fact that Sir Raymond Streat had been privately told in confidence was, I thought, an unworthy attempt to plead in aid the Chairman of the Cotton Board. I apologise for again quoting "Manchester Guardian." It stated: Even a Minister as junior as Mr. Maudling should know that this is the oldest and stalest of political tricks. You tell a man something 'confidentially' and you shut his mouth. It is a trick used from the beginning of time to keep newspapers quiet. In fact, Sir Raymond Streat was not permitted, so far as I understand, to tell the Cotton Board.

The President of the Board of Trade (Mr. Peter Thorneycroft)

He was specifically told that he could inform his colleagues on the Cotton Board.

Mr. Wilson

Then it seems strange that they should issue a statement to say that they have not been told. Perhaps the President will sort that out with them.

The plain fact is that this Government do not believe in consultation with industries. We know that where certain vested interests are concerned they consult them very favourably; they dance to every tune they play. But among that list of interests which they consult we do not find Lancashire or the Potteries. We ask, "Why not? "Did they not contribute enough to Tory Party funds at the last Election? We have seen in debate after debate that the cotton industry is the Cinderella of this Government's economic policy. The trouble is—I am sorry to say—that the Government think they know it all as regards the cotton industry. We have to tell them that they do not.

The President himself scarcely ever visits the great industrial centres. I should think that few, if any, Presidents of the Board of Trade have spent so little time in Lancashire as the right hon. Gentleman has done since his appointment. His hon. and learned Friend, the Parliamentary Secretary, usually does not come to our cotton debates, and although he no doubt has great qualities he is utterly useless in an industrial Department. We welcomed the appointment of the Minister of State, Board of Trade, and we welcomed his visit to South America until he interrupted it to come back and cause disruption on the further proceedings of the Cotton Bill.

The President has more than, once shown his contempt for consultations with the cotton industry. I cannot quote the proceedings of the Standing Committee on the Cotton Bill as that Committee has not reported to the House, but we know from an answer which he has given to the House that there was no Ministerial consultation with the industry about the Cotton Bill. We know that he is unwilling to consult the industry about future events in connection with raw cotton. It is fair to say—if the President disagrees he willno doubt say so—that no Government have had less Ministerial consultation with these industries than this one has had.

I have no doubt that as we have raised the question of consultations there will have been intensive Government researches going on into the record of the Labour Government and my own record in particular because whenever the Government get into a mess or do anything they should not do their only reply, apparently, is to do a lot of intensive research into telegrams and cock a Parliamentary snook across the Table and say "You're another. "I should not be surprised to find that there has been more Board of Trade time spent in the last week trying to find evidence of my failure to consult industries than Board of Trade Ministers have spent in consultation with those industries in the whole of last year. I shall not be at all surprised if the President gets up and tells us that on the occasion of the Anglo-Ruritanian Agreement of 1948 we failed to consult the humbug manufacturers. Obviously, there will be such cases; I do not for a moment deny them. What I do say is that where major industries were prejudiced by Governmental action, particularly by bilateral trade agreements, where there was any question of a major reversal of trading policies there was consultation with those industries. In some cases markets had been closed by foreign Governments and we tried time and time again to get them reopened.

I would not say that in every such case we had consultations but where there was to be a new decision involving a major change I think we can claim that there were consultations, with the exception, fairly mentioned by the hon. Gentleman a week ago, about the liberalisation of trade in Western Europe. When going into a major policy of liberalisation affecting literally thousands of industries and products it would have been physically impossible to consult them all. What we did do was to say that if any industries were prejudiced they could make their case to the Government for an increase in tariffs. That was the main point involved in the case of horticulture. We started the machinery that made that possible, machinery which the President has continued to use during the past few weeks.

I know that the Government spokesman will throw up the question of the so-called "Black Pact" with Cuba, about which the "Daily Express" got into a state of apoplexy again last week. The trouble about the "Daily Express, "when commenting on the Cotton Agreement is that it supports Commonwealth trade but combines that with an entirely incompatible support for the Conservative Party and opposition to long-term contracts. I wish to save the time of the House, but I know this will be thrown up if I do not deal with it. The "Daily Express" went so far as to say that we did not consult the sugar growers. But they were not prejudiced; sugar imports have continued to increase since then, and my right hon. Friend the Member for Rochester and Chatham (Mr. Bottomley) flew 8,000 miles to consult the sugar growers of Cuba before a decision was taken. The Board of Trade Ministers cannot even board a train to go to Manchester to see the cotton industry, a train which, if they chose the right one, stops at Stoke-on-Trent. Where there was any major change in policy it was our policy to consult, especially where Japan was concerned. We were under frequent pressure from a number of countries to give most-favoured-nation treatment to Japan. We were in constant consultation with the industries, and, I say this in fairness, like the President and the present Government we refused to give that most-favoured-nation treatment.

We had constant consultation with Lancashire whenever the problem of Japan came up—[An Hon. Member: "What about the Peace Treaty?"] There was consultation on the Peace Treaty. The hon. Member knows perfectly well that certain guarantees were written into the Peace Treaty. Our problem tonight is to try to find out how far they have been honoured. We realised that memories of Japanese competition and its effects have burned deep into the hearts of every Lancashire worker. The same is true of the workers in the Potteries.

The second point in our Motion refers to unfair practices. We say that this Agreement should not have been concluded until there were effective guarantees against the revival by Japanese exporters of unfair practices. I do not wish to wory the House with details of the kind of practices in which Japan used to indulge before the war, but it is important that the House should realise that these practices have not stopped at the end of the war but have been revived again. I would refer hon. Members to the Overseas Economic Survey, published by the Board of Trade,—the report by the Commercial Minister in Tokyo—in which he says: a number of cases of imitations of United Kingdom textile and pottery designs by Japanese manufacturers have been reported in the post-war period. He went on to say: There will, no doubt, continue to be many cases of infringement of foreign industrial designs in the textile and pottery fields. Much of the industry is in the hands of small 'family' units who are not members of the relevant trade associations and as often as not transgress through ignorance rather than from intent. We can produce a great deal of evidence to show that particularly in the last few months the pirating of industrial designs has increased to an alarming degree. For instance, I can quote from a letter sent to an hon. Member of this House by one of the leading figures in Lancashire dealing with overseas trade. He states: I must tell you that we are far from satisfied with the position about design infringements by Japan. In some markets it has become as bad as pre-war, and unless we can get their Government to force their calico printers into a gentleman's agreement to refrain from deliberate copying, we shall, for technical reasons, never stop it by mere design registration, as the Board of Trade suggest. This seemingly minor matter can affect us enormously; our best designs and fastest colours on good quality cloths are killed by the entry a couple of months later from Japan of the identical designs but printed in loose fugitive colours on low filled finish cloths selling at half the price. The dealers who import our British fibres even suffer by losses in 'selling off,' and thus is created the loss of confidence which cuts out our trade so much. That is from one of the leading figures in the Lancashire textile industry.

What protection has there been? I gather that there was a proposal some time ago, following the President's reference to registration of designs, for a conference with the Japanese and a conference was held in Manchester. The Japanese proposed to the Manchester Chamber of Commerce that the way to deal with it would be for every new design registered in Lancashire to be made known to the Japanese who would then take 300 copies of these designs and send them to their manufacturers and ask them not to copy them. What the Japanese did not realise was that they were dealing with hard-bitten Manchester merchants—they must have thought they were dealing with the Economic Secretary—and, of course, the proposal was turned down.

We have not, so far as this market is concerned, even the protection of the utility standards which we had two years ago. Where are those quality standards which the President told us were to be worked out? He told us that two years ago. He said they would be worked out within a few weeks. For the greater part they have just not been worked out, but they would have provided some protection against poor quality imports. I do not wish to develop the question of Purchase Tax tonight because that has already been debated this week, but I wish to point out that the cheaper Japanese production coming in escapes the D level and gets a double advantage compared with the British home-produced material.

I wish to say a word about unfair practices more generally. We admit, and I have said, that Lancashire must face fair natural trade in the Colonies. I do not intend to say anything tonight about low wage standards in Japan, because we know there has been some improvement in trade union organisation there since the war. But only yesterday the "Manchester Guardian" had a headline—"Japanese Government hits at trade union." The paper went on to say: The Japanese Government has struck another blow at trade union freedom which the legislation of American occupation has tried to ensure. It would be unkind to remind the Government of the leading article in tonight's "Evening Standard. "I am sorry if hon. Gentlemen opposite have not seen it—about wage standards in Japan in relation to this very Agreement. I wish to ask the House, having said that Lancashire must be prepared to face fair and natural trade, whether the trade we are likely to get in the Colonies will be either fair or natural.

I do not need to make much of the point that Japanese exports to the Colonies will be abnormally and unnaturally virulent in this period because they are being denied access to their normal market in China. We know that the United States have always put a lot of pressure on other Governments to accord favourable treatment to Japanese imports, but will hardly allow any Japanese goods into the American market ac all.

The result of the closed markets in other areas will be that competition will be more violent in the colonial markets. It will not only be abnormally strong. When water is dammed up in one area it will rush with all the more force through any narrow channel into which it has been forced, and similarly this, competition will not only be stronger but will be actively unfair, in that the Japanese exporters are at present dumping their products in other markets, including the Colonies, and, as was said in the "Economist," masked by a dual price system. They have a separate exchange rate for exports from their normal official exchange rate. I do not know whether this surprises the President, but those are the facts.

I do not know what guarantees the Government have against this sort of dumping, because at the present time, for reasons I will give in a moment, the costs between the two countries are not all that out of line. On the official exchange rates Japanese costs are not all that below Lancashire costs. Some people say they are actually higher. But so long as they can use special exchange rates they can always get under the Lancashire price with export subsidies and we must expect them to do so ruthlessly. We know how close is the tie-up between the Japanese manufacturing and export interests on the one hand and the Japanese Government on the other.

One has to deal with the motive of the Government in entering into this Agreement. We have had the statement of the Economic Secretary, and last week-end, when he was opening the North-Western Conservative Party area headquarters, in Manchester, Lord Woolton had something to say about this Agreement. One result of the Agreement is that the headquarters will not find any customers. But his statement, and that of the Minister of State, Board of Trade, who also spoke about the Japanese Agreement when in the Midlands, were described in the "Manchester Guardian" as "soothing syrup." That paper said: The trouble is that both of them made the dose too strong. Indeed, it tasted suspiciously like whitewash. It went on: Listening to Lord Woolton one might suppose this Agreement to be a wonderful thing, hardly less important in history than the Ottawa Agreement of blessed memory. In that connection, we notice that the hon. Gentleman the Member for Preston, North (Mr. J. Amery) has actually signed the wishy-washy Amendment which has been put down by Conservative Members representing Lancashire constituencies.

So far, we will agree that the motive is to maintain Japanese purchasing power for sterling area commodities. But what is the reason for the deficit? The first reason is the monstrous inflation in the Japanese economy resulting from, to some extent at any rate, American military expenditure in Japan to the tune of 500 million dollars in the last three years. This inflation has allowed a spending spree on consumer goods. The "Economist" noted that this emergency sustenance has enabled and encouraged the Japanese, in 1953, to import luxury goods and now Lancashire is in a mess as a result.

Then, again, there has been the relations between Japan and Australia. We all know that the present Australian Government removed controls and that imports from Japan have risen several times above the previous level. Then Australia faced a balance-of-payments crisis and cut down her imports from Japan. One result was that Japan ran into a serious deficit with Australia. I believe that in the first nine months Australia sold £52 million worth of imports to Japan and Japan sold only £2 million worth to Australia.

There have been very large wool purchases by Japan. I do not know whether the Government have satisfied themselves about those purchases, which, in pounds weight, were 76.6 million in 1951, rising to 91. 9 million in 1951–52 and to 154.3 million in 1952–53. I think that those figures were actually published earlier this week in a rather dull Sunday newspaper which is sometimes enlivened by contributions from the hon. Member for East Aberdeenshire (Sir R. Boothby). We cannot understand why these large wool purchases are continuing. Are they speculative? Is it true, as some people say, that what Lancashire cotton is facing today Yorkshire will be facing tomorrow, in virulent Japanese competition in wool?

One of the serious things about this matter is that the Economic Secretary, finding this deficit, sets out to conclude a sterling area payments agreement, but not a sterling area trading agreement, as has been done by Australia, South Africa, India, Pakistan and other self-governing territories. One of the serious aspects of this, as has been pointed out by my right hon. Friend the Member for Leeds, South (Mr. Gaitskell), is that the Sydney Conference seems to have made no real attempt to get a Commonwealth trading policy which would have been capable of looking after this problem, and because of its inability to plan a trading policy the whole brunt of this deficit falls on Lancashire and the Colonies. We must make certain assumptions in regard to Dominion trading. Obviously, we cannot control the acts of Dominion Governments or importers. Those are pious aspirations. Control, in the Colonies, of their trade is exact and can be very harsh, It is fixed and done by licensing.

What, in fact, are the Government doing, with this Agreement? The Economic Secretary has tried to solve the problem, with which we agree he is faced, by creating or reviving an artificial system of Free Trade in an un free world, in which a large part of the trade is held up either by strategic restrictions on the Chinese market, by American Protection or by the unpredictable acts of the self-governing territories in the Commonwealth. Nevertheless, he still tries to inject a self-balancing Free Trade system within this very narrow area of trade between Japan and the sterling area, and so we get his new Conservative Party doctrine of Free Trade, Manchester school and all the rest of it, along with trade based on export subsidies and dumping, which is not assumed to be part of the classical Manchester Free Trade tradition.

The Japanese put this plan up to the Economic Secretary, and he fell for these proposals. If George Tomlinson had been with us tonight he would have said, "They saw him coming." Certainly, the Japanese have been overjoyed by this Agreement. They have been surprised by it, because it is a far more generous Agreement than they expected. The "Manchester Guardian "has made that clear. Let me give one more illustration about our trade in raw cotton.

During the war, and for some years after the war, this country bought practically the whole of the Uganda cotton crop on a bulk-buying arrangement. Japan got very little of it. In 1951, for instance, we bought nearly £10 million in the sterling area and Japan bought £360,000 In 1952, when the President of the Board of Trade started his policy of private buying, we got £8 million worth and the Japanese got £3 million worth of Uganda cotton. This year, of course, with the situation thrown wide open by private buying, we shall probably buy very little cotton from Uganda in this country. Uganda is having to look to Japan to sell her raw cotton, so we get his fantastic situation: Japanese textiles, under this Agreement, are being imported into Lancashire so that the Japanese should have the money to buy Uganda raw cotton which is no longer coming to this country because the Government have wound up the Raw Cotton Commission.

That is the situation which will go on and will save Japan dollars, of which Japan had an abundance, while we are spending more dollars on American cotton instead of getting our cotton from Uganda. That is the kind of mess that Government policy has got into. Trade within the Commonwealth is being reduced to bear the brunt of this Agreement. There is talk about increased shipments to Japan, and oil has been mentioned. How far, we would like to know, is this Agreement a sell-out to world oil interests at the expense of Lancashire, the Potteries and the rest?

The "Manchester Guardian" said the other day: The main criticism against the Government is not that they are trying to keep up the level of trade between Japan and the sterling area but that the Government have displayed an astonishing ineptitude in making the Agreement. I do not think that the hon. Gentleman would disagree with that for a moment.

Let me give him another illustration. Japan is freely supplied with dollars. Before the Japanese Peace Treaty and before the Payments Agreement of August, 1951, balances were settled in dollars. Surely what ought to be happening now is that the hon. Gentleman ought to have asked the Japanese to give up some of their dollars to pay for the deficit. The Payments Agreement of 1951, about which I know the hon. Gentleman is to make a long speech, never envisaged vast deficits like £110 million to be supplied by the kind of method that the hon. Gentleman has in mind. As the "Economist" said: It is high time that they (Japan) called in the currency of the New World to restore their deficit with the Old. Trade will depend on an exact balance of accounts between Japan and the sterling area. I made a reference to the Manchester school a few minutes ago, but I hope that the Liberals here tonight—and I see the right hon. and learned Gentleman, who was very pleased with the Government and their policies—

Mr. Ellis Smith (Stoke-on-Trent, South)

And with the "Economist"—

Mr. Wilson

—and the rest of the Liberal Party will not think that this Agreement is Free Trade. It is not. It is bilateralism run mad. It is a bilateral Agreement.

The Government insist upon balancing financially within this bilateral agreement. Everything is, in fact, falling on the trade in the Colonies. The idea is that it is supposed to maintain colonial supplies. I have seen figures produced by the Japanese Government suggesting that finance between the Colonies and Japan just about balanced, and that what is happening under the Agreement is that the Colonies are to bear the brunt of it. The Colonies and the cotton industry are to pay for Japan's excessive imports of Australian wool. Lancashire cotton is paying for Japan's imports of Australian wool.

I have referred to the fact that the "Manchester Guardian" has expressed the view that the Government have been more zealous to get the Colonies to take Japanese goods and increase their quotas even than the Colonies themselves. The "Manchester Guardian "says that the spokesman of the Japanese cotton industry has said as much. What happened last year was that most of the colonial markets were closed. This year, they are wide open. How can anyone plan production or marketing with these violent reversals in Government policy? Already, within the last 10 days, orders for Lancashire goods from East Africa have come to a full stop. The Lancashire cotton industry is already facing enough disturbance and upset because of the Government's raw cotton policy. Now they are in great doubt about their overseas market. How can they plan their raw cotton buying policy when they cannot have the faintest idea how much they are going to be able to sell to the Colonies?

The Government might ask what we would have done. I have mentioned the two principles. We do not believe, as a long-term policy, in using the Colonies as a protective market. Japan, I agree, has also to be helped to pay her way. Instead of flinging the doors wide open, we would have arranged a planned Increase in quotas, so much this year, so much next year, and so on, and then Lancashire would know what she has to meet.

As the right hon. Gentleman told the House last July, Lancashire has been making great efforts to meet the requirements of the colonial market. We had the mission led by Sir Frank Platt, which inquired into the question of the standardisation of production and of collective marketing. I say that not a single member of that mission would have gone to West Africa had he known that the Government intended to introduce this policy at this particular time. All the good work done by that mission has been undone.

The Government will tell us that we must do something to enable Japan to raise colonial standards of living. If the Government want a proposal for enabling Japan to play her part in Commonwealth development, then the proposal I would make is that she should have been invited to co-operate in the Colombo Plan, and that we should have asked Japan to contribute capital equipment for the use of Asian countries under that Plan.

What the Government are doing is certainly not planning, and is not in any way helping Lancashire to improve the efficiency of her industry. I say that hon. Gentlemen opposite are betraying the trust which they hold to those who elected them. Not one of them would be here tonight if he had told his constituents at the last Election that he would support an Agreement of this kind. Indeed, many of them, at the last Election, were using unscrupulous stories about the import of Hong Kong shirts. I suggest that some of them should face their constituents on this matter.

Finally, I say to the President of the Board of Trade that he may have been soothed by the noble Lord's syrup into believing that this Agreement could be made acceptable to Lancashire. It cannot. I challenge the right hon. Gentleman to come to Manchester and to debate this Agreement with me in the Free Trade Hall there. The charge for admission and all the profits made can go to Lancashire charities, including unemployment relief. If the right hon. Gentleman feels thatI have chosen a ground which might, perhaps, be favourable to our point of view, I will go wherever he likes, to Birmingham or to any other area where he thinks he will get a more favourable hearing. If he comes to Manchester he will hear a lot about the effects of the Government's policy of subordinating trade to the interests of finance at this time.

The right hon. Gentleman has broken faith with the Lancashire cotton industry. I do not believe that he wanted to do that, but that he was bulldozed into this by the Treasury, the Foreign Office and the Minister of Materials. This Agreement has been negotiated by a crowd of amateurs, and I suggest that they should now get out and let the Government of the country be taken over by those who take a real interest in Britain's trade, those under whom Commonwealth trade was a great deal higher than it is now and under whom the nation's export trade was much higher, and, moreover, those who do not regard trade as a plaything for doctrinaire party politics.

7.54 p.m.

The Economic Secretary to the Treasury (Mr. R. Maudling)

This debate is taking place upon an Opposition Motion, the terms of which appeared on the Order Paper only this morning, for reasons which we can all understand. But the right hon. Member for Huyton (Mr. H. Wilson) dealt, quite rightly, with the Agreement, and I also would like to deal with the merits of the Agreement before coming to the specific criticisms he made.

It is, of course, an extremely important Agreement both by reason of the volume of trade involved for this country and the sterling area, and also important by reason of our memories of Japan, to which the right hon. Gentleman very properly referred. I shall endeavour to show that the Agreement as a whole is in the general interest of this country and of the sterling area, a fact which I have not yet seen seriously disputed in any quarter, and which is certainly not disputed in the Motion. I will also endeavour to show that the damage which some people fear may happen to industry in this country will, in fact, not happen.

There is, of course, as a general background to sterling area trading, the position of Japan in the non-Communist world, to which the right hon. Gentleman made a passing reference. There is the general question of trading policy, of how, if we are asking dollar countries to pursue good creditor policies, we can fail to do so ourselves. I want to rely merely on the economic argument that the continuance of the Sterling Payments Agreement is a good thing for the United Kingdom and for the sterling area.

Mr. Ellis Smith

Others are involved.

Mr. Maudling

They are, indeed, and it would add great strength to my argument if I had time tonight to discuss that point.

The Sterling Payments Agreement, which has just been renewed, was signed originally by the Labour Government. I think it was a very good and sensible Agreement on which to base our long-term trading with Japan. The principle of it was that trade between the sterling area and Japan should be conducted in sterling. There were four good reasons for that.

The first was that the more sterling is used in the world, the stronger the currency it becomes. Secondly, the alternative to trading in sterling would be to offer credit to Japan or to have a settlement in dollars, neither of which would be an attractive proposition for this country. The third reason was that in the long term there will obviously be a strong demand for Japanese goods in the sterling area, and it will be most important, if the sterling area is to buyfrom Japan, that Japan also should pay in sterling, as otherwise we should have a long-term deficit with the Japanese. Fourthly, if we do not have this sort of sterling payment, the Japanese would probably conclude separate bilateral agreements with a number of the Dominions. In the case of some of the Dominions which are selling a large part of their raw materials to Japan, if there were separate bilateral agreements with Japan, that country would in all probability be able to force upon these markets larger quantities of Japanese goods than they can at the moment.

They are four substantial reasons for the Agreement which was signed by the Labour Government and which we have continued. There is no change in the principles underlying our trade and payments with Japan. It is the Agreement which the Labour Government signed. The important bearing of the Payments Agreement on trade arises from the exchange of notes which is incorporated in the 1951 Agreement. This read as follows: To ensure the smooth working of the Agreement, the Government of the United Kingdom and the Government of Japan mutually recognise the desirability of keeping Japan's sterling balances within reasonable-limits in order that at all times Japan may hold sufficient sterling to meet her requirements without, however, accumulating an excessive amount. Having regard to all the circumstances, both parties will take all reasonable measures to prevent, or to correct should it occur, any chronic imbalance of payments in either direction. It amounts to this. If the other chap does trade with one in sterling, then he must have sterling with which to do it. What happens as a result of this Agreement? After the signature of the Agreement in 1951, there was a substantial development of trade between Japan and the sterling area. That was part of the agreement—a substantial increase of trade, including a substantial increase in imports of Japanese goods to the Colonial Territories.

It is an interesting fact—I have looked up the figures—that the figure agreed for colonial purchases at that time was £91 million, precisely the same figure as in the existing Agreement. The Colonies purchased goods at a much heavier rate than this. In the earlier part of 1952 they were purchasing from Japan at the rate of no less than £105 million per annum. That was the immediate outcome of the 1951 agreement. At that time it was not a question of Japan being in deficit. While these purchases were taking place, we were accumulating a very heavy deficit ourselves, and action had to be taken. The Japanese began to accumulate very large quantities of sterling—up to £130 million at one time. They could not ask for dollars because, under the Agreement, they had to hold sterling. They did not press for dollars. They increased their purchases from the sterling area while, at the same time, we imposed very severe restrictions on colonial purchases.

It is those restrictions which were imposed in 1952, because of the balance of payments difficulties, that have now been eliminated. As a result of these restrictions, the balance swung completely the other way, and in 1953 Japan had a deficit of over £100 million. At the end of the year they had run completely out of sterling, although they had to purchase £44 million in sterling from the International Monetary Fund which, in effect, improved our dollar position. The more sterling required from the Fund by other countries the better became our position with the Fund.

That was the position when these last negotiations for the renewal of the contract were taking place. Japan had run out of sterling. If they were not to be forced drastically to cut imports from the sterling area, they had to be allowed to earn more in the sterling area. The right hon. Member for Huyton seemed to imply that the right thing to have done would have been to forbid the Australians to sell wool when the Japanese asked for it. That is a fine Imperial policy. The Australians want to sell wool and the Japanese want to buy wool. The Japanese had a deficit of £100 million a year and their sterling balances were completely exhausted. We had to choose between a higher level of trade on both sides or a lower level of trade on both sides, and Her Majesty's Government considered that the right choice was for a higher level of trade.

Mr. J. T. Price (Westhoughton)

The Economic Secretary is now telling the House what he told us a week last Monday, when he made his important declaration to the House. Shorn of all the technicalities which he is now trying to explain to the House, he is reiterating his statement that, because this country had reached a creditor position vis-à-vis Japan—and we have always been told that the object of British policy is to get out of the red and into credit—we must give away some of our bastions of trade to allow the other fellow to trade. Why is not the same thing done for us, with our shortage of dollars?

Mr. Maudling

If people have no sterling, they cannot buy sterling goods. I do not think that the hon. Gentleman wants to provide aid to Japan in the same way as the dollar area provides aid to this country. He asked why we did not demand dollars from the Japanese. Our dollar position was improved by their purchasing from the Fund, and, under the terms of the Agreement which the Labour Government signed, just as the Japanese could not demand dollars from us when things ran against us, so we had no right to demand dollars from them when they were in difficulties.

If we take away their dollars, what is likely to happen to them in the near future? Their dollar position is not as strong as some people imagine. In any case, it is impossible to say to Japan, or to anyone, "We expect you to maintain your purchases from us while we continue to restrict our purchases from you, in order to keep you in a state of chronic deficit and deliberately earn dolars out of you." I have never heard that put forward as a negotiable proposition.

Mr. H. Wilson

The particularAgreement to which the hon. Member refers was concluded in August, 1951, by my right hon. and learned Friend the Member for St. Helens (Sir H. Shawcross). Surely it provided that if there was a very serious deficit in trade there should be consultation, after which new proposals could be put forward?

Mr. Maudling

Consultation of the type which has taken place when the tendency has been for one side to put on restrictions and the other side to increase purchases. There was no provision to upset the whole Agreement once it became inconvenient to either side. Both the Japanese and we have carried out our part in what has proved to be a sensible agreement.

Mr. Sydney Silverman (Nelson and Colne)

Now the Government have made a new one.

Mr. Maudling

The hon. Member does not even yet understand that we are prolonging the Agreement which was made by the Socialist Government.

Now I come to the practical effects of the trade discussions and the talks that went on while the Agreement was being negotiated. The Japanese undertook to maintain their 1953 level of imports from the United Kingdom and the Colonies. That is very important. I would ask the House not to underestimate the fact that there are important and growing markets in the Far East for manufactures of machinery, motor cycles, and woollen and textile goods which would not be available to us had the Agreement not been concluded in that way. Those markets would have been cut off, because the Japanese could not have afforded to buy United Kingdom goods. They had already been forced to cut down purchases.

Let us take the case of wool textiles. The quota for these goods in Japan next year will be £2 million. Taking wool and all textiles, the United Kingdom will sell more textiles in Japan than the Japanese will sell for consumption in this country, which is an extraordinary thing. Then there is the position with regard to oil. There is a provision that the Japanese are not to discriminate against sterling area oil in favour of oil from other sources. They must give us a fair crack of the whip. Precisely the same thing applies to shipping. They have been discriminating against our shipping and they have undertaken not to do that. These are important gains to British trade. As a result of the arrangements envisaged, we shall have, as between the United Kingdom and Japan, not only a surplus over-all but a surplus on visible trade alone, which is, again, quite extraordinary.

Now I turn to our undertakings. We undertake to permit certain small quotas of Japanese goods for consumption in this country—apparel and pottery, and so on. The amount of pottery concerned represents one three-hundredth part of the consumption of this country, and in regard to apparel the proportion is one-fifteenth of 1 per cent. The amounts involved in these quotas are very small. I would ask hon. Members representing constituencies which are concerned to pay close attention to the actual quotas and to bear in mind that these are for one year and no more.

The United Kingdom will also import £3 million worth of grey cloth for processing (here and for re-export. That is less than half the annual rate of import in 1951, and, indeed, in 1952, when the textile industry was having great: difficulties. I am quite confident that the finishing end of the trade can make good use of this Japanese grey cloth to expand its export sales.

Turning to the Colonies, from the remarks of the right hon. Member for Huyton there appears to be no great difference between us on the principle which is involved with regard to the Colonies. I hope that that can be generally understood.

Mr. Ellis Smith

There is a difference.

Mr. Maudling

Perhaps the hon. Member will be fortunate enough to catch your eye, Mr. Speaker, so that he can explain what he meant, because his right hon. Friend did not. Whilst there are no balance of payment difficulties, we have in many cases no power, and we have in no case the right, to say to the colonial people, "You must not spend your own money on Japanese goods which you would prefer. You must spend it on Lancashire goods instead. "I do not think that anybody in Lancashire or elsewhere would suggest that we could say that. Nothing could be worse for our relations with the Commonwealth and Colonies than that attitude. Some of the newspapers which attach such importance to questions of Commonwealth and colonial relations should ponder on the question how they can contribute towards those good relations by forcing the Colonies and Commonwealth to buy with their own money goods which they do not want.

These are the undertakings. They are the Japanese undertakings to maintain their level of purchases from the United Kingdom and the Colonies. These are the concessions on our side—the small imports into this country and the recognition that in present circumstances, without any balance of payments difficulties, it is right for the Colonies to import up to their estimated requirements, which is what they were doing at the end of 1951.

I turn to the right hon. Gentleman's criticism. This is a very limited Motion. I see that the "Manchester Guardian, "which has been performing rather peculiar gyrations recently, says that this Motion is strongly critical of the Agreement. I see nothing in the Motion which criticises the Agreement at all. What the Motion criticises is the absence of prior consultation and the absence of assurances on unfair trading practices. I see nothing about the substance of the Agreement, and from that I take it, and the House will take it, that the party opposite do not oppose this Agreement as an Agreement.

Mr. Ellis Smith

Then why are we dividing?

Mr. Maudling

That is exactly what I want to find out.

Mr. S. Silverman

If the hon. Gentleman looks more carefully at the Motion, he will find in the third line the words, regrets the action of Her Majesty's Government in entering into a trade agreement.… It goes on to say why.

Mr. Maudling

The hon. Gentleman cannot expect to catch me in that way: he is far too amateurish. The Motion reads, regrets the action of Her Majesty's Government in entering into a trade agreement with the Japanese Government without prior consultation with the industries concerned, and without securing assurances that Japanese exporters will not revert to previous unfair trade practices.

Mr. Silverman


Mr. Maudling

I cannot give way again. The hon. Gentleman will have a chance to advance his own argument. I have my argument to make.

Mr. Silverman

I need only one second to make the point.

Mr. Maudling

I am sorry, but I am already taking too long. This is a short debate.

Mr. Silverman

The hon. Gentleman is taking too long to say nothing whatever.

Mr. Maudling

I think I am saying a good deal more than the hon. Gentleman will say.

Next, I turn to consultation. What I said about consultation, when the right hon. Gentleman asked his Private Notice Question the other day, was that it had never been the practice of any Government to consult whole industries before relaxing quotas imposed for balance of payments purposes. I am quite certain that that is accurate. It is true that before the 1951 Agreement was signed the Government invited comments from the Cotton Board, and rightly, because that Agreement made a complete change in our relations with Japan. It changed the dollar basis to a sterling basis. At the moment we are merely renewing the Agreement, as we have already twice renewed it since 1951.

What the people in Manchester are particularly concerned about is the quotas for the Colonies, and on the colonial quotas the Labour Government did not consult the textile industry in 1951—and quite rightly, of course. Surely it is wrong for any Government of this country to accept the obligation to consult the home trade before permitting the Colonies to buy goods from the competitors of the home trade. That would be quite wrong, and I do not think we can be blamed for not consulting them in circumstances in which I am sure the right hon. Gentleman himself would not consult them.

The question of unfair competition has been raised, and my right hon. Friend the President of the Board of Trade will be able to deal with that much more thoroughly than I can. I want to point out once again that when the 1951 Agreement was signed there were no assurances against unfair competition. We had not even signed the Japanese Treaty by then. I agree that the Agreement came into force with the Treaty, but there had been no experience of the Treaty, and there were no assurances then.

This is an important point, and we know that there are strong feelings on this matter in Lancashire and in the Potteries. My right hon. Friend says that as examples of unfair trading practices are brought to our notice we will take action upon them. These quotas are for one year only, and if there were a great recrudescence of unfair trading practices, that is a matter which we should have to take very much into account in renewing the agreement for next year.

Mr. H. Wilson

Including dumping?

Mr. Maudling

Yes. That is a question of unfair competition.

I return now to the effect on the textile industry and the Colonies. It has been suggested that Lancashire is having to bear an unfair part of the burden because many additional Japanese sales will be of cotton textiles. To a large extent that is true, but it is textiles, and particularly cotton textiles, that the Colonies want to buy. Inevitably, because they want to. buy them, the main competition will arise in that range.

I want to give the actual figures in order to get this matter into scale. The main increases in the colonial licences will be in the entrepôt Colonies which buy Japanese goods for resale elsewhere as Japanese goods. Other Colonies, however, buy Japanese goods largely for consumption, and these are the goods about which the textile industry is concerned. In those Colonies the increase in the licensed imports of Japanese goods, compared with last year's limit, will be from £17,500,000 to £25 million. That is the increase in the amount which will be licensed.The actual amount which will be sold depends on the total sales of textiles in those Colonies, the degree to which Lancashire is competitive and also the degree to which Japanese imports displace not Lancashire goods but goods from other countries, including European countries.

That £25 million is, therefore, the absolute maximum. Even if the Japanese should sell in those Colonies goods to the full amount of £25 million, that will be substantially less than the rate at which those Colonies were buying immediately after the conclusion of the 1951 Agreement. When the right hon. Gentleman talks about an abrupt reversal of policy, he is, if I may say so with deep respect, talking nonsense. In the first half of 1952 those Colonies bought from Japan at an annual rate of £28.4 million. Then the restrictions were imposed heavily, and these figures fell. When the restrictions are lifted again and the new arrangements made, the maximum figure will be only £25 million, which will be less than the rate of purchases in the first half of 1952.

When the right hon. Gentleman suggests that we should do this slowly and with a gradual relaxation, I must tell him that that is precisely what we have done. Perhaps the right hon. Gentleman did not notice it. When we first made the relaxation in 1953 he did not ask any Parliamentary Questions about it. This process of relaxation was started in April, 1953, and was continued in August, 1953. There were no Parliamentary Questions, there was no complaint, there was no excitement. We were relaxing progressively, and now we have reached a situation in which, as we are agreed, there are no longer balance of payments reasons for limiting imports into the Colonies of the goods from Japan which they need.

I have explained the principle of the Agreement, in which I gather the right hon. Gentleman concurs. What I have tried to explain is that in practice this does not mean any substantial displacement of Lancashire goods in the Colonies. What is also important—and I ask Lancashire members to take notice of it—is that in the absence of the continuation of a Sterling Payments Agreement we might have had a bilateral Japanese-Australian agreement which might have forced many more Japanese goods into Australia in competition with Lancashire goods. That must be borne in mind.

Mr. John Edwards (Brighouse and Spenborough)

I wonder if we could be given the corresponding figures for the Dominions. The Economic Secretary has given us only half the picture. Lancashire wants to know the whole picture.

Mr. Maudling

In answer to a Private Notice Question, I explained that the figures given by the Dominions for this Agreement were the Dominions' own figures; they were not our figures. They were given in confidence and they are not for publication. We are responsible for the United Kingdom and the Colonies, and what I have endeavoured to show is that this Agreement is in the interests of the United Kingdom—of that there can be no shadow of doubt—and that it is right and proper that the Colonies should have this Agreement—and of that there can be no shadow of doubt. What I have also endeavoured to show is that there wild not be any serious injury to any industry in this country.

We were told that we should have consulted the importers. I think I have dealt with that point. If we consulted people in this country in competition with Japan we should also consult people whose trade with Japan will be completely cut off, and we should also consult the consumers—and that is not an easy thing to do.

The duty of the Government was clear. It was to obtain the best possible Agreement in the long-term interests of the United Kingdom and of the sterling area with the minimum possible disturbance to any industry in this country. That is what we have done. Right hon. and hon. Gentlemen opposite know perfectly well that that is what we have done. As they know it, and as they show it by this half-hearted Motion on the Order Paper, I ask them to recognise in the House what they know in their hearts to be true.

8.20 p.m.

Mr. Sydney Silverman (Nelson and Colne)

May I make one thing clear? I hope that it is not yet out of order or improper in this House for Members of Parliament to speak on behalf of their constituents. That is what I propose to do for 10 or 12 minutes in this debate, because my constituents live by making cotton goods and by selling them. They live almost only by that.

What the Economic Secretary has just said, unless I have woefully misunderstood his argument, which is no doubt quite possible, is that this Agreement is a good thing in the interests of British economy as a whole. It is a good thing in the interests of British economy as a whole because it is in those interests that we should trade in sterling with Japan. Japan cannot trade with us in sterling unless she has the sterling. Japan cannot have sterling unless she buys goods from us and sells us goods. The goods which she wishes to sell are largely textile goods. Perhaps the Minister will tell me if I am right?

Mr. Maudling

I said that the goods which the Colonies wish to buy are textile goods.

Mr. Silverman

The goods which the Colonies wish to buy are largely textile and, therefore, the goods which the Japanese wish to sell to the Colonies are the goods which the Colonies wish to buy. These goods are textiles. That is only what I said before the interruption. I think that we are now clear on that point—that Japan has to acquire the sterling which she needs by selling to the Colonies the textiles which now Lancashire sells to the Colonies. Am I right? Does the hon. Gentleman disagree with that; if so, will he tell me what is wrong with it?

Mr. Maudling

I explained in great detail what the effects are likely to be on Lancashire exports to the Colonies.

Mr. Silverman

I do not know whether the Japanese saw the hon. Gentleman coming or not, but I assure him that he cannot see me coming. I heard him say later in his speech why this was not going to do Lancashire any harm, and before I come to that part of his speech, I wanted to be sure that I had got this argument right so far.

Mr. J. T. Price

It is as old a trick as the other one commented upon by the "Manchester Guardian."

Mr. Silverman

It may be, but I want to getclear, first of all, that the object of the Agreement is to enable Japan to sell textile goods partly to this country and to sell more to the Colonies. I take it that the hon. Gentleman agrees on that. Then he went on to say—I want to be perfectly fair to his argument so far as I could understand it—that nevertheless this would not do Lancashire any harm because Lancashire, if she does the thing properly, will be able to sell as much textiles to the Colonies as she sold before.

The hon. Gentleman will probably agree with me that that could only be true if the Colonies bought globally more textile goods than they have been buying. I will readily give way if there is any fault in my arithmetic, because I am not very good at it, and I am not an economist; but I take it for granted that if Japan is to sell more textiles than she has been lately selling, which is one object of the Agreement, and the Colonies are to buy more goods from Lancashire, the Colonies must be buying more textile goods as a whole than they bought before.

Mr. Maudling

Japanese goods may well displace many textiles that came from other areas than Lancashire.

Mr. Silverman

I do not know whether the hon. Gentleman is agreeing with my argument or disagreeing. I take it for granted that he made the Agreement to enable Japan to acquire sterling largely by selling textile goods to the Colonies. Let me ask the hon. Gentleman this. Supposing his safeguards come off, and supposing, as a result, Japan does not sell as many textile goods to the Colonies or acquire the sterling that is contemplated by this Agreement; supposing Lancashire does succeed in meeting the competition and keeping its own goods on the Colonial markets in competition with the Japanese goods and, therefore, Japan does not acquire the sterling which is the object of the Agreement, what will the Government then do? By its showing, the Agreement would have failed, in its purpose, by its showing the Government would have to make a new agreement, and by its showing they would have to raise the quotas again, because unless they did the Japanese would not acquire the sterling.

I am putting a serious argument to the hon. Gentleman. If the object of the Agreement is to enable Japan to acquire sterling, which she has not got at present, by dint of selling textile goods on the Colonial markets, if she does not acquire sterling by so doing, to be logical and consistent the Government will have to revise the Agreement at the end of the year, not by way of reducing these agreed quotas but by way of increasing them.

Mr. Maudling

Until they get up to the level of the reduced quota there is no object in having a larger one.

Mr. Silverman

The hon. Gentleman is now saying that if by these quotas the object of this Agreement, which was to enable Japan to earn sterling, fails, then he will abandon this Agreement altogether—

Mr. Maudling

indicated dissent

Mr. Silverman

—because it will have failed to achieve its purpose and there will be no object in increasing the quotas because they will not be able to fulfil them.

It seems to me perfectly clear that the object of the Agreement, crudely stated, is to prevent the Lancashire textile trade and the Staffordshire pottery trade from selling goods which they are now selling to consumers in this country or in the Colonies, and that it is held that that is a good thing in the general economy.

Mr. R. T. Paget (Northampton)

Surely the answer is that the Government's object is not achieved unless the Japanese fulfil their quota. If Lancashire, by being highly efficient, prevents Japan from fulfilling its quota by fair means, the Japanese must be allowed to fulfil it by foul means and unfair trading.

Mr. Silverman

I am obliged to my hon. and learned Friend. It must be one or the other. If it is the object of the Agreement to enable Japan to acquire sterling, and if Japan fails to acquire sterling, either the policy must be abandoned altogether or the situation must be alleviated so much further as to make it easier for the Japanese to do that, which is the overriding object of the Agreement as a whole.

Let us turn to the Motion. I dare say the Economic Secretary does not agree, but if the Lancashire textile trade, both those who employ and those who are employed, in spite of the hon. Gentleman's disagreement, by and large, agree with my view of the position, does the hon. Gentleman think that if he had consulted the Lancashire textile interests or the pottery interests beforehand, they would have agreed with the proposition? He knows perfectly well that they would not, and that the reason the Government have so conspicuously failed to consult either the textile industry or the pottery industry is that they know perfectly well that neither of those industries would have accepted any such agreement had it been asked in time. Indeed, the Government fight shy in an almost pathological way of consulting Lancashire about anything.

The President of the Board of Trade recently made an Order about a Development Area in North-East Lancashire.North-East Lancashire is very dissatisfied with the result of that Order. It has a development committee. All the local authorities covered by the order form a joint development committee. That committee asked the Members of Parliament representing—

Mr. Deputy-Speaker (Sir Rhys Hopkin Morris)

The hon. Member is getting a little wide of the Motion.

Mr. Silverman

I am only giving an instance of the lack of consultation, Mr. Deputy-Speaker. It will not take a moment to finish. That joint development committee asked that the President of the Board of Trade should see the three Members of Parliament representing the area, who sit on either side of the House.

Mr. Deputy-Speaker

The hon. Member must not pursue that further.

Mr. Silverman

The point can be finished in one sentence by saying that the President of the Board of Trade—

Mr. Richard Fort (Clitheroe)

On a point of order—

Mr. Deputy-Speaker

I have made my ruling quite clear to the hon. Member.

Mr. Silverman

What the Government have to decide is whether they wish to retain a cotton industry in this country and, if they wish to retain it, at what level they wish to retain it. What is the Government's plan for the cotton industry? What is their long-term policy for it?

Mr. Cyril Bence (Dunbartonshire, East)

They have not got one.

Mr. Silverman

The cotton industry knows perfectly well that it is living in a changing world. It is not asking for a narrow protectionism. It is not asking that it should be protected from the winds off air competition. It is not asking that no matter what it costs the rest of the country or the rest of the world, it must be secure in the employment of its present level—or any level—of production or sales. It is only asking to know where it is with the Government.

Mr. Bence

They are threadbare.

Mr. Silverman

What plan is the cotton industry to work to? The right hon. Gentleman knows perfectly well that the memories of cotton workers in this industry are long and bitter. He knows perfectlywell that we cannot make a cotton worker by transferring an agricultural labourer or a coalminer from some other part of the country. If good cotton workers are to be trained, we must begin to train them young. Their experiences of the industry over many years made most cotton workers that I have ever met make up their minds that they would never again put their children into the industry.

After the war, they were appealed to by the Labour Government, by the Tory Government, by the employers' organisations, by the chambers of commerce and by the trade unions themselves, co-operating with everyone else, to forget their old fears, and they went back. Confidence has been restored, but it is a plant of very slow growth. Every time confidence begins slowly, painfully, hesitantly to return to the cotton industry of Lancashire, the Government strike a new blow and destroy that confidence.

And for what is all this being done? In the interests of free trade? In the interests of freedom for the Colonies to buy what they like? In the interests of an advancing and improving standard of living for the workers of Japan, the workers in our Colonial Territories, or the workers of Lancashire? Do the Government really suggest that we can assist any of those courses by taking the products of sweated producers in one country and forcing them down the throats of sweated consumers in another? It must be quite clear that we cannot do that.

It is recognised that cotton may have its contribution to make in the reorientation of British Trade. It may have to fit into quite a new place in world trade, but my right hon. Friend was perfectly right when he said that if that is to be done, we must carefully define what our target is, and move towards it by slow and steady steps, adapting the industry to the new situation at every step. That cannot be done unless we have the confidence of the people on both sides in the industry, and that confidence cannot be gained if there is failure to consult those people and take them along at each step as it is made.

That is exactly what the Government have failed to do. They have failed to make any attempt to do it, and even now they do not promise to do it. It is perfectly clear that no one concerned with the lives of the people in the industry, orwith the general problems involved, could possibly support this Trade Agreement arrived at in this way without safeguards of any kinds. If there are hon. Gentlemen opposite representing Lancashire constituencies who think that they can, I hope that they will say so, not merely here but in their constituencies. They have put down an Amendment to my right hon. Friend's Motion—and if the Economic Secretary calls ours a half-hearted Motion, I wonder what epithet he could find to describe the Amendment: …acknowledges the sense of responsibility to the nation and to the Colonies which Her Majesty's Government has shown and its impartiality in taking this decision, and. whilst recognising that advantages will accrue to the trade of the Empire, urges Her Majesty's Government"— Urges them to do what? [Hon. Members: "Read on."] I suggest—urges them, now that the horse has departed, to put as many locks on the door as the progress of the horse during the next 12 months may seem to require. That is what they are asking. It is an indeterminate Motion. It is an attempt to make the best of both worlds. Those hon. Members opposite representing Lancashire divisions should make up their minds whether it is their wish to be of any assistance to the Lancashire industry or not. It is all very well to be loyal to the Government, and no doubt it is one of their duties and one of the necessary loyalties of their lives. But they have no right to be more loyal to the Government than to their constituents.

8.40 p.m.

Mr. Ralph Assheton (Blackburn, West)

I beg to move, to leave out from "House"to the end of the Question, and to add instead thereof: acknowledges the sense of responsibility to the nation and to the Colonies which Her Majesty's Government has shown and its impartiality in taking this decision, and, whilst recognising that advantages will accrue to the trade of the Empire, urges Her Majesty's Government that any further arrangements should provide such safeguards of the interests of the textile industry as the experience of the coming year may show to be necessary. This Amendment has already been misquoted to the House by the hon. Member for Nelson and Colne (Mr. S. Silverman). One of the difficulties in this debate is that we have not got any documents before us. It makes it very much more difficult to formulate an argument adequately or criticise proposals which have been put forward without all the documents that are necessary. I have no doubt that in due course they will be forthcoming, but they are not before us tonight.

I feel it my duty to speak on behalf of myself and other Lancashire Members, all of whom, I regret to say, will not succeed in catching your eye, Mr. Deputy-Speaker, owing to the lack of time. I should tell the House that there is very genuine anxiety in Lancashire about this Agreement, particularly in those areas which are largely associated with the cotton trade.

Mr. F. Blackburn (Stalybridge and Hyde)

Then why did the right hon. Gentleman put down his Amendment?

Mr. Assheton

I have just said exactly why we have put it down.

The part of the Amendment which the hon. Member for Nelson and Colne did not read out—

Mr. S. Silverman

Which I paraphrased.

Mr. Assheton

—which he says he paraphrased, concluded by urging: Her Majesty's Government that any further arrangements should provide such safeguards of the interests of the textile industry as the experience of the coming year may show to be necessary.

Mr. Blackburn rose

Mr. Assheton

No, I amsorry; I really cannot give way. There is not much time, and we have to conclude at 10 o'clock. Very few of my hon. Friends will have a chance to speak in the debate so I will try to voice their opinions.

Mr. Blackburn

In the time the right hon. Gentleman has taken to say that I could have asked my question.

Mr. Assheton

I want to tell the House that there is genuine anxiety in Lancashire, which, I hope, will be allayed to some extent by the speech which has been made by the Economic Secretary to the Treasury, who has related to us some additional facts of which we were not previously aware. I understand very clearly the Government's difficulties in trying to make an Agreement of this sort. They have to do their best for the country and for trade in the Empire as a whole, which hon. Members opposite have recognised, but I cannot refrain from concluding that the very definite benefits which accrue from this—and some of them may accrue to industry in Lancashire—are, to some extent, at the expense of the textile trade.

What I want to ask the President of the Board of Trade, first, is this: does he not think that the contribution demanded from the Lancashire textile industry is unduly heavy?

Mr. Silverman

He says there is not any.

Mr. Assheton

The Economic Secretary advanced very clever arguments and put his case extremely well. But I am not quite sure that people who have not lived in Lancashire all their lives appreciate the emotional importance in Lancashire of the word "Japan. "No amount of logical argument will dispose of that feeling. I remember Mr. Lloyd George once saying that the English people—he being a Welshman—had very long memories and that it was very dangerous to rouse them.

Mr. Ellis Smith

Mr. Lloyd George was born in Manchester.

Mr. Assheton

He claimed to be a Welshman, and living in Manchester gave him an opportunity of knowing something about the English people. He said that fighting against ghosts was a dreadful thing. That is what we are up against in Lancashire.

Some hon. Members may remember that we had a debate in the House when the Japanese Peace Treaty was signed. On that occasion I took the opportunity to say something about the dangers and anxieties of the Lancashire cotton trade. I reminded the House then of some of the history of the industry, which Lancashire people still remember. In 1913, Lancashire wove 8,000 million yards of cloth, of which 7,000 million yards were exported, 3,000 million yards going to India. Then the war came, India played a great part in it and, as a result, was granted a tariff. In a few years those 3,000 million yards were no longer being exported to India and the trade of Lancashire was reduced to one-eighth of what it had been, at the same time as Japanese competition was beginning.

This was described by Godfrey Armitage as being the greatest retreat in the history of industry, and with that great retreat in indusry came great suffering, which was gallantly borne and only properly understood by those who lived in Lancashire at that time. About 800 mills were closed down, over 350,000 looms were put out of action, 21 million spindles were destroyed, employer after employer went bankrupt. That is what happened, and the memory of that cannot be erased from the minds of the people in Lancashire. To the operatives in Lancashire the Japanese were blacklegs, paying low wages, working too long hours and employing child labour. As I said on that occasion, I cannot be expected to go to Blackburn and shout, "Long live Japan."

The feeling in Lancashire today, a very strong one, is that not sufficient account has been taken of the interests of Lancashire trade. That may be wrong, but the feeling is there and no one can deny it. Only a few months ago the Chancellor of the Exchequer went to Bolton and made a speech urging the businessmen of Lancashire to export more. Minister after Minister has made a similar speech. If I may say so, we have heard that cry to increase exports almost ad nauseam.

Here we have an Agreement by which it will be made much more difficult for Lancashire to export. My hon. Friend the Economic Secretary has put the case, and I hope he is right. He maintains that it will not affect adversely the trade of Lancashire, or not very much. But the people in Lancashireare not so confident as my hon. Friend; they fear that they will lose some of their markets and they do not know where to replace them.

One word about consultation. There has been much criticism about the lack of consultation. I do not propose to go into the past, but as the President of the Board of Trade will be going to Lancashire shortly, and no doubt will meet the Cotton Board, I suggest to him that he takes the opportunity of meeting and consulting both sides of the industry. The Cotton Board is not quite that. I want him to meet and consult the employers and the workers, to put his position to them and to explain things to them. If he does that, I am sure it will be of great advantage.

Mr. Harold Davies (Leek)

And drop off at North Staffordshire on the way.

Mr. Assheton

My right hon. Friend can always do that if he has time. [An Hon. Member: "He will not get much farther."] Many people in Lancashire hold the view that there is some feeling in Whitehall that the Lancashire cotton industry is expendable. When my right hon. Friend replies to this debate, I want him to tell us that there is nothing whatever in that and to accept our Amendment.

8.50 p.m.

Mr. Ernest Thornton (Farnworth)

I listened very closely to the argument of the Economic Secretary to the Treasury. I usually find that he expresses a case with very great clarity and I have no difficulty in understanding him, but tonight I had great difficulty in following his argument. It appears to me that the policy of the Government is that Lancashire must fail in competition with Japan otherwise this Agreement fails. That is my interpretation. If that is correct it reinforces our fears and apprehensions.

The Economic Secretary gave the impression that the renewal of the Agreement is no different from the original Agreement, but there is a vast difference between the attitude of the employers towards the renewal of the Agreement and their attitude towards the original Agreement. I know the cotton employers of Lancashire very well. Some of them are very able gentlemen. I have great respect for those who came to see the President of the Board of Trade yesterday. They do not seem to be very much impressed by the Government's reasons for making this Agreement. These gentlemen are quite all right, except that, in the main, they are supporters of the party opposite. That is my only objection to them, but in spite of that, I repeat, they are not impressed.

I agree with a great deal of what the right hon. Member for Blackburn, West (Mr. Assheton) had to say, but I shall not be able to express myself quite as unemotionally as he did, because during the 1920s and 1930s to which he referred, I existed as an unemployed operative and a trade union officer among the people of Lancashire. I saw their anxieties, their sufferings and almost their disintegration. It is not surprising that, as the right hon. Gentleman said, the very mention of the name of Japan and of Japanese competition raises emotion, fear, and anger in Lancashire because of the people's very bitter experience. Anyone who has lived among them must understand that. Logic, particularly of the type advocated tonight, will not convince the people of Lancashire that they have nothing to worry about. I hope that the Economic Secretary and the President of the Board of Tracie will come to Lancashire later in the year and argue out their case with the people there.

The right hon. Member for Blackburn, West referred to the impact on our trade in the 1920s, when we lost our great India market. I agree with him. One of the reasons for the sudden loss of that market was the boycott of Lancashire goods because of our continuing occupation of India. Then we had the impact of Japanese competition in the 1930s. The result was catastrophic falls in production in Lancashire mills and mass unemployment. Lancashire people today fear that this Agreement signifies another catastro- phic fall in production. The Government have a responsibility to allay their suspicions and fears. I have grave doubts about what the situation in Lancashire will be later in the year.

I have a great respect for the ability of the Economic Secretary, but, without being immodest, I hope, after 30 years' experience in industry and in close contact with its problems—the ebb and flow of trade and markets—I may be allowed to say that while I have great respect for the economists and experts, and appreciate their knowledge, I have found that my own fears and my own wishful thinking have proved correct as often as those of the experts. I have great fears on this issue today and I believe that my fears of the consequences of this Agreement, based on experience, are as reliable as the forecasts of economists on the other side of the House.

The Lancashire cotton textile industry responded loyally to appeals of the Government and their predecessors to build up production, to build up exports and help towards the vital economic recovery of this country. Our industry, employers and unions, co-operated loyally—perhaps better than in any other industry in the country. We built up manpower from approximately 200,000 to 330,000. We took in thousands of foreign workers to help in this effort, much against the feelings of many of our staunch trade union members. We built up the manpower to a level which many of us thought was too high and which could not be sustained. But we did that and the reward is an agreement of this kind that strikes at the very roots of our export trade, that can have a very sudden effect and will precipitate uncertainty and, I fear, widespread unemployment in our industry again.

It must be remembered that half Japan's export trade to the sterling area is textiles and it is obvious that the Lancashire textile industry will feel the main impact of any increase in Japanese exports. Will the Agreement be to the benefit of the sterling area as a whole? I accept that perhaps it may be. I am by no means sure—I have grave doubts—that this Agreement will be to the benefit of the United Kingdom as a whole and I am certain that the Agreement will not be to the benefit of the Lancashire textile industry. Unemployment and insecurity are unemployment and insecurity, whatever the causes. I would challenge right hon. Gentlemen opposite to go to Lancashire if we have unemployment, which I fear, and tell them, "You need not worry, boys and girls, you are making a sacrifice because you are keeping people in jobs in other parts of the country." That will not wash at all; that will not do.

In view of the inherent dangers to Lancashire of this Agreement, I think it was a fundamental mistake that prior consultation did not take place with both sides of the industry. As the right hon. Member for Blackburn, West remarked, having regard to what Japan means in the minds of Lancashire people psychologically, it would have been common sense to have consulted both sides of industry before concluding an Agreement of this kind. I am sure that, if prior consultation had been entered into, the weight of opinion would have been so strong that modification would have been made in the proposed agreement. As a result of the disturbance which is taking place in our industry now due to the Cotton Bill—which, I suppose, will soon become an Act—the winding up of the Raw Cotton Commission and the impact of this Agreement, we shall have a very serious situation to face in Lancashire before this year is out. Those two things can quite easily synchronise and create a very difficult situation.

The actions of this Government, not their protestations, clearly indicate to Lancashire that this Government have written Lancashire off as an effective part of the national economy. That will have very serious repercussions in the County Palatine. I am not denying that Japan has an economic problem, one which is probably more serious than our own, but what I do protest about is that an attempt is being made to save Japan's economy at the expense of Lancashire.

I know that Japan has a population of 88 million, and that it is growing at the rate of 1.3 million a year. I might add that I have had the opportunity of examining conditions on the spot, not only in Japan but in China and India in the post-war period, so what I have to say is at least based on some first-hand experience.

Mr. Ellis Smith

Speak for us as well; we shall not get a chance.

Mr. Thornton

The danger I foresee is that this Agreement will result in a sudden expansion of Japanese exports of cotton textiles. What will be the first effect of that in Japan? It will encourage her to extend even further her spindle capacity, which is already over-expanded. In 1949, Japan had 3½ million spindles. Her spindleage grew at the rate of approximately a million per year until 1952, when it was 7½ million. A significant fact about 1953 was that her expansion slowed almost to nothing. Her spindleage expansion was only 100,000 last year. In my view, that was a result of the quota arrangement and the restriction of her markets, which was a warning to Japan that she might have over-expanded.

I forecast that during 1954 there will be another million or 750,000 expansion of Japanese spindleage—

Mr. J. T. Price

Thanks to this Agreement.

Mr. Thornton

—thanks to this Agreement.

Mr. Ellis Smith

And American finance capital.

Mr. Thornton

That will have the effect of again distorting Japanese production at the expense of the trading communities of the world.

Japanese labour costs in the case of cotton textiles are, according to the chief statistician of the Cotton Board, about a third of the labour costs in Lancashire. That is a condition against which we cannot possibly compete under unrestricted trading conditions. We should be quite clear about that. It is a fantastic situation. Japan is a phenomenon of the 20th century because her industrial growth, her operative, technical and managerial skill have been achieved on the basis of an Asiatic standard of life. Japan is the only country that has done that.

Never since the Industrial Revolution have there been such wide disparities in labour costs as those between Japan and the Western countries. That is a problem which Her Majesty's Government ought to be facing up to. I do not say that because of that Japan should be excluded from trading with the world. She must trade, but this unique situa- tion obviously calls for some serious plans to attempt to build Japan into the developing of the world without disrupting and undermining the trade and living standards of people in the Western world.

That is a very serious problem. I suggest that the Government have not attempted to give serious consideration to a plan that will merge that great industrial people into a plan for increasing living standards without undermining the living standards of the Western world. The United States of America, as my right hon. Friend the Member for Huyton (Mr. H. Wilson) indicated, will not accept these low labour cost goods. Even during the period of the full operation of the sterling area restrictions, the imports of Japanese cloth into America represented only one-third of 1 per cent. of American textile production. That, apparently, is the extent of their willingness to help in terms of trade and not aid.

I wish to put some questions to the President of the Board of Trade. Do the Government think that Lancashire is expendable? Lancashire requires an answer. They want action as well as protestations. Do the Government think the cotton textile industry is too large and that it should be contracted? I wish to make clear that I, who have spent a lifetime in the industry, would not make any claim at all that the industry should be static, or should not be allowed to contract, or that any artificial attempt should be made to maintain the size of the industry.

I protest, however, at an action which may lead to a catastrophic fall in production and mass unemployment. In my judgment, the Lancashire industry, or at least the trade union side, would be amenable to a plan for a gradual reduction in the size of the industry. What we do not want is a catastrophic fall which would mean mass unemployment. We have had more than one bellyful of that in Lancashire.

Do the Government intend to pursue their policy of non-consultation, even when violent changes in the pattern of employment are involved? That is a very important question. Those of our people whose livelihoods are at stake have a right to be consulted before vital decisions of this kind are made. Their whole feeling of security is at stake. They should not be considered as mere numbers, or statistics, or as pieces on a chess board.

Have the Government a plan for working a public co-operative trading policy which would take into account this problem of Japan to which I have referred? The Government—and I am not complaining of it—have played a part in attempting to build a co-operative collective defence system on an ordered plan. But their trading policy shows no co-operation at all. It is a return to unrestricted cut-throat competition. I give this warning, that the political unity on which the Western defence system is based cannot live in the face of a return to cut-throat competition by the participating nations.

9.18 p.m.

Mr. Ian Horobin (Oldham, East)

As a Lanoashire Member representing a constituency entirely dependent on cotton, I have naturally considered this Agreement carefully. I think the House will at any rate acquit me of any particular sympathy with Japan, for there can be few, if any, hon. Members of this House who have suffered so much as I, for I was for several years a prisoner of war.

We must, however, face facts, and I am bound to say that on the ground of the general advantage to this country and to the Empire—I will come to the particular Lancashire point in a moment—the case as I see it for continuing the Agreement signed in 1951 is overwhelming. As has been pointed out, Japan is in the position in which we were in 1951—heavily in the red. She has either to cut her imports of our goods, our sterling exports made by the workers of this country, or she has to export more. Surely, at a time when many hon. Members opposite take the view, which I do not altogether share, that we may be faced with a continuance of the American recession, the argument for balancing our trade at a high level and not at a low level is all the more important.

If we did not do something of this sort—and nobody opposite has said what we should do—the whole of the British policy in the economic sphere is sheer nonsense, and not only for this side of the House. It was to a great extent owing to Sir Stafford Cripps that we had the policy of going to Washington and saying "Ferranti's and English Electric must be allowed to earn dollars." It is sheer nonsense, if we then go to Tokio and say, "You are in the same position but we are not going to let you earn dollars."There are, as has been pointed out, something like 90 million people in Japan cooped up on an island much poorer in natural resources than our own, and if they cannot earn their keep they will starve. As reasonable people, we must not consider solely our own constituencies, but must bear that point in mind.

The Government are to be congratulated on turning their backs on what would undoubtedly have been an easy way out, but would have got us entangled in a new Brazil arrangement whereby we would pretend to export but would be really giving the stuff away. There was really nothing else the Government could do. I need not spend any time referring to the moral issue, because I am glad to see that we are all in agreement about the moral impropriety of trying to stop the Colonies doing what they want to do with their own money. We were told that there should have been safeguards, but nobody found any practicable safeguard to put into the Agreement in August, 1951, when the need of that sort of thing was much greater because we were facing a serious balance of payments problem. The people who are always priding themselves on their power to see the future did not perceive that the cotton slump of 1952 was not very far away. For all these reasons, I feel that, however unpalatable this may be for Lancashire, something of the kind was absolutely inevitable and must, in honesty, be commended.

Having said that, I must ask the Government some questions. I expect that when the Minister replies we shall be given a little more assurance—we were given some—about exactly the scale of the effect that this may involve for us. We may argue how much damage it will do to us, but nobody can dispute that this Agreement will make things more difficult for Lancashire's export cotton. It is very important that we should have some idea of the scale involved.

I want to offer my own guess, and if it is wrong I hope my right hon. Friend will tell me so. No one has given a guess so far in this debate. So far as I can see, Japan has to make up something of the order of £81 million with her general exports into the sterling area. That will get her back to the 1952 level. That is all that this involves. We are merely getting back to where we were before the general restoration of our own balance of payments.

Coming to cotton, we are told that the Agreement may involve something like £7 million in the non-entrepôt colonial markets. Here is a point related to the remarks addressed to us by the hon. Member for Nelson and Colne (Mr. S. Silverman). A very great portion of the sterling which Japan is to be allowed to earn will be earned in the entrepôt trade. If she did not earn it, somebody else would, and it is obviously to our advantage to send this stuff to Aden and Singapore. Of the £81 million which has to be earned this year, if something of the order of £66 million has to be earned in that admirable way it can do no harm.

That leaves something like £25 million, and, taking the normal proportion, it would appear that of that perhaps £15 million will be involved in non-entrepôt trade. If those figures are right, I estimate that the increase in cotton to the non-entrepôt Colonies will be of the order of £5, £6 or £7 million a year which would represent, say, 60 million yards of cotton piece goods.

If that is roughly right—we shall know later on—what is the scale of the threat to Lancashire? Sixty million yards into the Colonies will not bring the Japanese exports appreciably, if at all, above the level which Japan was exporting in 1952. I draw the attention of those hon. Members opposite who are anxious to the fact that if that be so, then Lancashire exports into the Colonies in 1952 were within one million yards of what they are expected to be this year.

Therefore, if I am right, the worst that is likely to happen is that Japan will get back to the level of exports to the Colonies which she had at a time when we were able to keep our present exports going. This seems to me only one more instance of the incurably restrictionist attitude of hon. Members opposite. They think that there is only a certain amount, and that what one person gets another must lose.

I should like—very greatly daring—to suggest to Lancashire that they are perhaps doing in this matter of Japanese competition what the Army is always accused of doing—preparing for the late war. Are they not, perhaps, barking up the wrong tree? May not these Japanese exports be at the expense of what is rapidly becoming a much more dangerous competitor to Lancashire and one from whom it is impossible to protect Lancashire because she is in the Commonwealth? I mean, of course, India.

I will give two figures to the House. Supposing I am roughly right and that Japan gets back to where she was in 1952, the position is that in all the last five years Japan will have been exporting to the Colonies round about 200million yards, which is less than before the war. Before the war, India was exporting to the Colonies 39 million yards. The Indian goods going into the Colonies, so far from being less than what they were before the war, are now something like seven times as great. Before the war the figure was 39 million yards, and it is expected this year to be over 200 million yards.

For all these reasons—I honestly do not see that anybody has told us what else we could do—it seems at least reasonable to believe that the damage to Lancashire will be nothing like as serious as is suspected, and it may deflect Lancashire's attention from what is really needed if we hold out hopes that she can protect her Colonial markets by such means as are suggested here, which obviously could not be applied to her Indian competitors.

I have only one other point to make before I conclude. Are we not beginning in this debate to overlook not only a possibly more serious competitor, but a possibly more profitable market? It is in the more expensive goods going into the great Dominions that it seems to me that we have at least as good, if not a better, chance of building up and preserving our exports. Just as this Agreement is helping to make a solvent Japan, so it will help to make a solvent Australia. We all know what happened when Australia had to cancel her contracts—some of us felt very bitterly about it—because she could not pay for them. If this Agreement gives her a better wool cheque, it may be very much to the advantage of Lancashire in a market which has greater prospects than the Colonies.

For those reasons I submit that, in the national interest and in Lancashire's interest, we are right in supporting this Agreement. There are reasonable grounds for supposing that the more extreme anxieties of Lancashire may not be fulfilled, but I beg of my right hon. Friend, in company with every speaker, not to underestimate the psychological, I might almost say the spiritual, importance of this question of Japanese competition in Lancashire.

If anyone comes to my constituency and holds an open-air meeting, as likely as not he will hold it on the grave and bones of a cotton mill which was destroyed by Japan, just as London's buildings were destroyed by Hitler. It is no use being half-hearted about this. Lancashire is worried. We hope that her fears will not come true. I hope that my right hon. Friend will put it beyond all doubt that in the year for which this new Agreement runs the situation will be watched most carefully and, if our more optimistic conception of this Agreement should be mistaken, we shall lose no time in making quite sure that Lancashire does not once again go through what she went through in the 1930s.

Mr. Ellis Smith

On a point of order. May I ask your permission, Mr. Speaker, to move, "That the debate be now adjourned," in order to ask the President of the Board of Trade whether he will consult the Leader of the House, so that the country's grievances can be rightly reflected by representatives from the constituencies which are—as is the country as a whole—vitally affected, having regard to our serious economic position? Will the President consult the Leader of the House in order that this debate may be adjourned, so that another day can be provided? I want to make it quite clear that in asking your leave to do this, I am making no reflection upon the Chair.

Mr. Speaker

This has been a very short debate for a subject which interests a number of Members on both sides of the House. Many hon. Members who have desired to speak have not been able to be called. At this stage I cannot accept a Motion for the adjournment of the debate. The hon. Member must make his representations for a continuation of the debate in some other way, if that is the desire of the Opposition.

Mr. Ellis Smith

I thank you for the sympathetic manner with which you have dealt with the point, Mr. Speaker, but we are in a difficulty. Can this question be raised again before the President concludes his speech?

Mr. Speaker

All I am concerned with is to accept or not to accept a Motion for the adjournment of the debate, and I cannot accept this Motion at this stage. No doubt what the hon. Member has said has been listened to, and further consideration can no doubt be given to the matter.

9.24 p.m.

Mr. John Edwards (Brighouse and Spenborough)

There must be very many hon. Members on both sides of the House who will share the feeling which has just been expressed by my hon. Friend the Member for Stoke-on-Trent, South (Mr. Ellis Smith). It is very unsatisfactory that we have not a longer time to debate this question, and I would urge all right hon. Gentlemen opposite to consider whether they cannot find a way to afford a further opportunity for other Members to speak on this very important matter.

My right hon. Friend the Member for Huyton (Mr. H. Wilson) having made it quite plain where we stand in relation to the Colonies, I would make it equally plain that we are not opposed to a payments agreement—even to a sterling payments agreement. Under the Labour Government many such agreements were made. We recognise that in present circumstances a high degree of bilateral agreement has to be reached with Japan. We do not, however, accept the view that there must be an absolute parity of trade. Indeed, I was a little surprised to hear the Economic Secretary imply that there was something within the Agreement which made it impossible for Japan to buy dollars from the International Monetary Fund, I want to ask the President of the Board of Trade this question specifically: during the negotiations, what discussions took place about the Japanese dollar accumulation? What discussions took place about the extent to which it was reasonable for some part of this trade to be financed by the purchase of sterling with dollars?

The Economic Secretary based almost the whole of his case on the idea that the Agreement which the Government have just made was no more than a renewal or an extension of the 1951 Agreement. This I contest emphatically. It has certain entirely new features, and it is those entirely new features which, I believe, are causing the gravest anxiety in many centres, for example, the Potteries.

What are the new features? First, I want to mention the token quotas for Japanese imports into the United Kingdom. Goods will come here which have not been admitted since before the war, and it is, I think, wrong to suggest that because the quantities are small they will have no impact upon our economy. It is true not only in economic theory but also in practice that if we have the import of low-cost goods of this kind, probably dumped anyhow, in circumstances where there is a buyers' market, then even marginal quantities may have a quite catastrophic effect on the conditions in the market. That was a situation which, it seemed to me, the Economic Secretary ignored completely.

The second feature which is different is this: the supply position is different. Since 1951 the supply position has altered very considerably. My own anxiety, frankly, is this: I am afraid that if the Japanese exports to the Colonies are to be increased by about £7,500,000, which is what I understood the Economic Secretary to say, then the bulk of it will be; at the expense of Lancashire, which would not have been the case even two years ago. The "Manchester Guardian" of 6th February said: Already in East Africa buyers have ceased placing orders in Lancashire pending further information about what Japan will be able and willing to sell. I am desperately anxious about this because I feel that the Government have not taken into consideration the quite considerable change in the supply position.

Let me take a third point. We have now had some two years' experience—indeed, more than two years'—since the 1951 Agreement. The Government are aware that the Japanese have a double price policy; they must know that the Japanese are subsidising their exports. I want the President of the Board of Trade to tell us how much discussion took place, inthese negotiations, about Japanese export subsidies. That is the kind of thing we are entitled to know. We tried to write some assurances about trade practices into the Japanese Peace Treaty. We have had further experience since then. Take the question to which my right hon. Friend the Member for Huyton devoted some attention—the pirating of designs. Will the President please tell us how much discussion took place on this matter in the negotiations? It is idle for anyone to pretend that these matters are not relevant. They are extremely relevant when we are considering the circumstances in which we should open the door of trade wider for Japan, even opening the door here in the United Kingdom.

I feel that the Economic Secretary's speech was most remarkable for what he did not say. We understand that the Japanese are expected to export some £200 million of goods, but what we do not know is what they are expected to export nor do we know where the £200 million worth of goods are expected to go. This is something which it is important for us to know. It is important for the people in Lancashire to know, and it is this which they do not know.

The Economic Secretary said that there would be £25 million worth of textiles going to the Colonies. When I asked him for a corresponding figure for the Dominions, he declined to give it; he declined even to give us a total figure, and it certainly would be no breach of confidence to tell us. We have not a clue, any of us, where the £200 million is going—[Laughter.] It is all very well for hon. Gentlemen opposite to laugh, but we, in fact, do not know tonight, nor does Lancashire know tonight, the answer to the questions I am putting, and I want the President to tell us what goods are to be exported and where he anticipates they are going.

Unless that information can be given, nobody in Lancashire can begin to plan or prepare for the future. The hon. Member for Oldham, East (Mr. Horobin) did his best to make an estimate, but he had to stop at the Colonies because he, too, could not make an estimate for the Dominions. The Government have this information—at least, I suppose they have; they would be even more inept than I suppose them to be if they had not—and if they have it, we ought to have it. The gravamen of the charge in our Motion is that the Government have entered into this Agreement without consultations. I do not suppose it would be true to say that the Government did not consult anybody. But I should like the President to tell us what consultations, in fact, took place. Were there consultations with the suppliers of visible exports to Japan? Does the President deny that there were consultations with the oil companies? If consultations took place with the oil companies, surely it would have been reasonable, even if there was a considerable disagreement, for consultations to have taken place with Lancashire.

The Economic Secretary, in his opening remarks, said that he relied solely on economic arguments. That, if I may say so, is where he went wrong. In these negotiations economic arguments have prevailed in a narrow sense. No consideration has been given to the psychology of Lancashire or the Potteries, no attempt has been made to understand how the people of these areas will react to an Agreement of this kind.

The contributions which Ministers are expected to make to discussions, to reinforce what their experts tell them with their understanding of the psychology of people, has, in fact, been notably absent. I would ask the House to consider the position in Lancashire. The dreadful times between the wars have left their marks, not only on Lancashire towns, but on Lancashire men and women. My former constituency of Blackburn, as late as 1938, had one-third of its people out of work, and they have not forgotten.

Consider the great difficulties, after the war, in trying to build up the labour force; how hard it was, not merely for those of us who were trying to persuade Lancashire to do this, but how hard it was for union leaders, councillors and parents to be persuaded in the light of their previous experience. Then, consider what is done to a community when there is one shock after another—for an industry burdened at the moment by Purchase Tax, by a D Scheme, which is increasingly disastrous, and with all the shock that came from the recession, now to have this. Does the President know what he has done? Does he recognise that he has undermined the morale of people in Lancashire? Does he recognise that he has made it almost impossible to recruit young people into the cotton industry? These are the things that he ought to have known. Some words from Gerard Manley Hopkins were in my mind, words that I take right out of their context, but which Lancashire could very well say to the President of the Board of Trade: Wert thou my enemy, O them my friend, How wouldst thou worse, I wonder, than thou dost Defeat, thwart me…? We accuse the Government of having behaved without any understanding of the interests of Lancashire and of having made no attempt to meet their susceptibilities. We believe that it was wrong of them, however much it may have been desirable to have a Sterling Payments Agreement with Japan, to do this, in these circumstances, without consultation and without getting some assurances on Japanese trade practices.

9.31 p.m.

The President of the Board of Trade (Mr. Peter Thorneycroft)

I welcome the chance to say a few words about the Agreement. The speech of the right hon. Member for Brighouse and Spenborough (Mr. J. Edwards) was shorter than the one with which the debate opened, but I think the House will agree that it was a rather better one. So far as we on this side are concerned, we make no apology for this Payments Agreement. We commend it to the House because we believe it to be a good Agreement.

The House presently has to decide whether to accept the Motion which the Opposition have tabled. I have listened to the debate upon it and I still do not know whether the Opposition are in favour of or against this Payments Agreement. I thought I should know when the right hon. Gentleman resumed his seat, but it was perfectly plain that the agreement to which he was referring was not a sterling payments agreement, because he wanted it financed in one part in dollars.

Mr. J. Edwards


Mr. Thorneycroft

I am sorry; I have very little time. I want to show three things, First, I believe that the Agreement is in the commercial interests and the export interests, not only of this country, but of the rest of the British Commonwealth. Much is said about an Imperial policy, but on occasions we should do something of this kind which really fosters the trade of the Commonwealth. Second, I believe that these negotiations were properly conducted, as I hope to show. Third, I want to say something which, I hope, will relieve the worst fears of Lancashire.

May I say this at once to my hon. Friends who have spoken and who represent Lancashire constituencies? I am not oblivious to the anxieties in the Lancashire cotton textile industry. I know that "Japan" is a word which has an emotional as well as an economic content. I know the memories that go back to Japanese competition before the war. I know the feelings which are prevalent about this issue—the feeling that Japanese wages are only 40 per cent. of our own, and the fear "How can one meet competition under such a margin?"

We are not the only people in the world who have those fears about other people. It so happens that the gap between Japanese wages and British wages is just about the same as the gap between British wages and United States wages.

Mr. A. C. Manuel (Central Ayrshire)

A silly argument.

Mr. Thorneycroft

We should remember those things. That is why, when one considers a matter of this kind, one needs to judge it coolly and calmly.

The speech of my right hon. Friend the Member for Blackburn. West (Mr. Assheton) put forcibly and moderately the case for the Lancashire cotton textile industry. He said to me—and I think that his thought was echoed by hon. Members opposite—that there was a feeling that the cotton textile trade was expendable. I want to say that the cotton textile trade is a giant amongst British industries. The economy of the country could not carry onif we were to cast away the vast contribution which that industry makes to our exports throughout the world. It has made a great contribution; it has still a great contribution to make, and it remains a principal concern of Her Majesty's Government to safeguard that industry. I hope in the course of my remarks to show that that is done.

There are many approaches to this particular subject. One can talk about the narrow issue of consultation, or about the interests of Lancashire, or about the colonial situation but in the last resort one has to start off with the big question—is this a good Agreement or a bad one? If it is a good Agreement, then no amount of consultation, no amount of protest, ought to have deterred Her Majesty's Government from signing it. If it is a bad Agreement, then no amount of consultation could conceivably have turned it into a good one.

Mr. Ellis Smith

It is a bad Agreement.

Mr. Thorneycroft

The hon. Gentleman says that it is a bad Agreement, and I understand that the Motion which has been put down is against it—but no one could gather that from the speeches from the other side. The hon. Member has made the shortest, but in some ways the most effective speech of the debate.

We had two things in mind in regard to the Agreement. From the first moment, it was perfectly clear that we would face considerable political criticism if we went forward with it. The second was that it was in the interests both of this country and of the Commonwealth that we should sign it. I believe that the case in favour of the Agreement—which was put very fully by my hon. Friend the Economic Secretary—is indeed a devastating one.

The principles of this Agreement were not, as a matter of fact, new; they were embodied in the earlier Agreement entered into by the Socialist Government. Those principles were that trade should be conducted in sterling between this country and Japan—which means that we must buy as well as sell—and that if there was an unbalance of trade, then one side or the other would have to buy more. In this case, as Japan was running a deficit, it meant that we had to buy, but there was quite a long time when Japan was running a very substantial surplus.

Now, what happened? Japan went into a deficit of £100 million. We then had to make up our minds whether to renew the Agreement on the terms and considerations upon which it had operated before—terms and considerations laid down not by us, but which were in the original Agreement which we are now renewing. From the moment it was decided to renew that Agreement, against the background of that deficit, it was perfectly obvious that a very substantial increase in purchases had to take place.

What would have happened had we not agreed to go ahead? Japan would certain have bought less from the sterling area. That is beyond argument. Japan would, even more certainly, have bought less from us because, to her, our goods were the least essential of any. It is also certain, thirdly, that if the trade balance went the other way—and it is only a little time ago that it was the other way—we ourselves would have had to finance our deficit in dollars. We cannot really have the best of every world and expect that Japan should finance her deficits in dollars and that we should finance ours in sterling. Fourthly, I really think that, after what has happened, to have refused to go ahead with the Sterling Payments Agreement would not have been the best way to encourage Japan to come into the Western comity of nations. I make no apology for mentioning that—commerce and foreign policy are not so divided as all that.

If we were to renew this Agreement it was equally clear that we would get some solid advantages. Sterling would be strengthened—the more trade that is carried on in sterling the stronger it is. The market for sterling goods would be secured, a not unimportant market for United Kingdom goods would be secured, and the purchasing power of the rest of the sterling area would be maintained. I conclude this part of the argument by saying that the case for the Agreement is overwhelming.

It is said, what about consultation? The Motion draws particular attention to the question whether proper consultation took place. Let us be quite clear about this. The Cotton Board was, of course, fully informed of what was happening.

Mr. Harold Davies

And the cotton industry, too?

Mr. Thorneycroft

Not only was the Chairman informed, but he was given full authority to tell the members of his Board exactly what we were doing. The Cotton Board was told. The responsibility for the Agreement belongs to the Government and not to the Cotton Board. I want to make it clear that the question which the cotton industry wished to discuss was the question of protection. I am not saying that is wrong. It is perfectly entitled to want to do so, but the question we had to decide was not a question of tariffs, but a question whether our balance of payments position justified in the case of the United Kingdom practically a complete embargo on the import of these particular Japanese goods. The Cotton Board has not complained that it was not consulted.

Mr. H. Hynd (Accrington)

The chairman has.

Mr. Thorneycroft

It has not.

Mr. Hynd

He has complained in the Press.

Mr. Thorneycroft

He has said it was not consulted and he is perfectly entitled to say it, but no Government, either this one or the previous one, at any time consulted any individual industry upon the lifting of quotas for balance of payments reasons. Indeed nothing could be more hypocritical than to consult an industry where no negotiation was possible, where discussions would be irrelevant to the issue that was to be decided, and where the advice would probably be ignored.

Dr. H. Morgan (Warrington)

Prejudging the issue.

Mr. Thorneycroft

The right hon. Gentleman the Member for Huyton (Mr. H. Wilson) and I both consulted the cotton industry, for example, at a time when we were concerned about the import of grey cloth. Both of us faced the same difficulty. We found that the Lancashire cotton industry—and I make no complaint about it—was in fact divided upon, that particular issue. But it was a perfectly proper one on which consultation could take place.

The other point I would refer to here on consultation is that of the colonial quotas. Surely it cannot be said that the President of the Board of Trade ought to consult the Lancashire cotton textile industry as to what quotas the colonial Governments would permit. I can imagine nothing more damaging to the Lancashire industry itself if anything of that kind were known in the Colonies. I do not believe that it can be seriously argued that that should be done. A point was raised by the right hon. Gentleman as to whether some secret information that was given should, in fact, be known. He was referring to some secret information to the chairman of the Cotton Board, and he used the words which he took from some Press report that that was the same old trickery; that somehow it inhibited the Cotton Board from taking some action it might want to take. I hope no one in the House will press that type of argument. Surely it must be right for any Minister to be able to give confidential information to an industry on matters of this character if he thinks it right so to do. I cannot conceive that it is wrong for a Minister to do that in his discretion.

Mr. Ellis Smith


Mr. Thorneycroft

No, I cannot give way. Surely it would be utterly wrong to have published this information in advance. We were at that moment in negotiation with the Japanese. If we had stated these figures publicly while our negotiators were in the middle of the negotiations, surely that would have been the way to get the worst possible deal for Lancashire. The right hon. Gentleman used the expression, "I saw you coming." Well, they would certainly have seen you coming if you announced to the Japanese the best that you hoped to get.

Mr. Ellis Smith

I want the President of the Board of Trade to consider this quotation from the "Manchester Guardian": Sir Raymond Streat emphasised that the Government did not consult the Cotton Board on its recent negotiations with Japan. What applied to the Cotton Board applied equally to the pottery industry.

Mr. Thorneycroft

I have just said that we should not have consulted them.

I now wish to turn to the question of unfair practices. Some anxiety was expressed, and not on one side of the House alone, about unfair practices, the copying of designs, and so on. Those are allegations which have been made often, and often justly made in the case of the Japanese. But there is already treaty provision in regard to this. In the Anglo-Japanese Treaty the Japanese expressed their intention— in public and private trade and commerce to conform to internationally accepted fair practices. That was signed by the Japanese. It is difficult to imagine anything much more specific that could be written into any other agreement. The suggestion is that they should have signed something more. What else? In addition, they are signatories of the Madrid Convention on False Indications of Origin and also of a further convention on industrial property rights. Therefore, as far as undertakings are concerned—and I emphasise that—this matter is fully safeguarded.

I believe that this is as much as hon. Members opposite could have done. When they negotiated an agreement, and were challenged at the time, the right hon. Gentleman the Member for Lewisham, South (Mr. H. Morrison) was asked to put in more and special provisions. He gave exactly the same answer as I have done, that it was quite impossible to tie it up any more closely than it was tied up at that time.

Mr. Ellis Smith

Now they are attacking trades unions.

Mr. Thorneycroft

It seems to me that my hon. and right hon. Friends who have put down the Amendment have exactly met this situation. They wish to be certain that the undertakings which have been signed will be honoured in practice. They are entitled to ask that. They wish us to keep the situation under control. They wish to see that if these treaty obligations are broken, Lancashire will not be at the mercy of Japanese competition and that some action can be taken.

Clearly there is a limit to what a Government can do in those circumstances, but I give the assurance that we shall watch the situation. If we find that those treaty obligations are broken before 1955—and this arrangement lasts only for one year—it is entirely in our own hands, so far as the United Kingdom market is concerned, to take adequate steps then. In the case of the colonial Governments, it is up to them. They are masters of the situation, but I have no doubt that they would consider taking comparable action.

The Colonies, I repeat, are masters of their own fate in these matters. They decide, and not us, what are the appropriate quotas for them to allow. The total estimate for the Colonies is £91 million but £66 million of that relates to the entrepôt countries, and I imagine that there is no one who would not suggest that if the Japanese are going to sell textiles to China they might just as well sell them through Hong Kong. It is a perfectly legitimate and proper trade.

As my hon Friend the Member for Oldham, East (Mr. Horobin) said in a very powerful and forceful speech, £25 million of the rest of the £91 million; go to the non-entrepôt Colonies. That, represents an increase of £7,500,000 on all goods. If we take 60 per cent, as the textiles proportion, say, £4 million or £5 million, that represents 50 million or 60 million yards of cloth. Will Lancashire lose all that? What about the Indians and the Europeans? They are all selling in that market. They are all just as liable to Japanese competition, and indeed, in the case of the Indians, they happen to be the ones who have gained trade from the quota restrictions imposed on the Japanese, and they are more likely to lose than anybody else. So I say that the 50 million or 60 million yards which my hon. Friend the Member for Oldham, East mentioned as an outside maximum is probably an accurate figure.

The United Kingdom is taking £3 million worth of grey cloth, which is welcomed by one half of Lancashire, and everybody in the House knows it. It is grey cloth which if it were not taken here would be taken by some other country and finished there. So far as the rest is concerned, minute quotas have been allowed in a number of cases where not a single Japanese article was allowed to cross the frontiers of this country. Does anyone suggest that against a background of a deficit of £100 million one could really justify, on balance of payments grounds, keeping a complete ban on the import of any single one of those articles? I do not believe that any hon. Member on either side of the House would be prepared to justify that in argument. So in fact we have allowed—and we have complete control over the situation—very limited imports of these goods.

This is not free trade. This is not a return to Adam Smith. It is a deliberate decision to choose an expansionist rather than a restrictionist policy. That is the choice which we faced. We took this course in the interest of this country and of the Commonwealth. We took the path of courage. It has paid us in the past and I believe that it will reward us again on this occasion.

Question put, "That the words proposed to be left out stand part of the Question."

The House divided: Ayes, 265; Noes, 296.

Division No. 32.] AYES [10.0 p.m.
Adams, Richard Freeman, Peter (Newport) Mellish, R. J.
Albu, A. H. Gaitskell, Rt. Hon. H. T. N. Messer, Sir F.
Anderson, Alexander (Motherwell) Gibson, C. W. Mikardo, Ian
Anderson, Frank (Whitehaven) Glanville, James Mitchison, G. R.
Awbery, S. S. Gooch, E. G. Monshw, W.
Bacon, Miss Alice Gordon-Walker, Rt. Hon. P. C. Moody, A. S.
Baird, J. Grenfell, Rt. Hon D. R. Morgan, Dr. H. B. W.
Balfour, A. Grey, C. F. Morley, R.
Barnes, Rt. Hon. A. J. Griffiths, David (Rother Valley) Morris, Percy (Swansea, W.)
Bartley, P. Griffiths, Rt. Hon. James (Llanelly) Morrison, Rt. Hon. H. (Lewisham, S.)
Bellenger, Rt. Hon. F. J. Griffiths, William (Exchange) Mort, D. L.
Bence, C. R. Hall, Rt. Hon. Glenvil (Colne Valley) Moyle, A.
Benn, Hon. Wedgwood Hall, John T. (Gateshead, W.) Mulley, F. W.
Benson, G. Hamilton, W. W. Murray, J. D.
Beswick, F. Hannan, W. Nally, W.
Bing, G. H. C. Hardy, E. A. Neal, Harold (Bolsover)
Blackburn, F. Hargreaves, A. Noel-Baker, Rt. Hon. P. J.
Blyton, W. R. Harrison, J (Nottingham, E.) O'Brien, T.
Bottomley, Rt. Hon. A. G. Hastings, S. Oldfield, W. H.
Bowden, H. W. Hayman, F. H. Oliver, G. H.
Bowles, F. G. Healey, Denis (Leeds, S. E.) Orbach, M.
Braddock, Mrs. Elizabeth Henderson, Rt. Hon. A. (Rowley Regis) Oswald, T.
Brockway, A. F. Herbison, Miss M. Padley, W. E.
Brook, Dryden (Halifax) Hobson, C. R. Paget, R. T.
Broughton, Dr. A. D. D. Holman, P. Paling, Rt. Hon. W. (Dearne Valley)
Brown, Rt. Hon. George (Belper) Holmes, Horace Paling, Will T. (Dewsbury)
Brown, Thomas (Ince) Houghton, Douglas Palmer, A. M. F.
Burke, W. A. Hoy, J. H. Pannell, Charles
Burton, Miss F. E. Hubbard, T. F. Pargiter, G. A.
Butler, Herbert (Hackney, S.) Hudson, James (Ealing, N.) Parker, J.
Callaghan, L. J. Hughes, Cledwyn (Anglesey) Parkin, B. T.
Carmichael, J. Hughes, Emrys (S. Ayrshire) Pearson, A.
Castle, Mrs. B. A. Hughes, Hector (Aberdeen, N.) Peart, T. F.
Champion, A. J. Hynd, H. (Accrington) Plummer, Sir Leslie
Chapman, W. D. Hynd, J. B. (Attercliffe) Popplewell, E.
Chetwynd, G. R. Irvine, A. J. (Edge Hill) Porter, G.
Clunie, J. Irving, W. J. (Wood Green) Price, J. T. (Westhoughton)
Coldrick, W. Janner, B. Price, Philips (Gloucestershire, W.)
Collick, P. H. Jay, Rt. Hon. D. P. T. Proctor, W. T.
Corbet, Mrs. Freda Jeger, George (Goole) Pryde, D. J.
Cove, W. G. Jenkins, R. H. (Stechford) Pursey, Cmdr. H.
Craddock, George (Bradford, S.) Johnson, James (Rugby) Rankin, John
Crosland, C. A. R. Johnston, Douglas (Paisley) Reeves, J.
Cullen, Mrs. A. Jones, David (Hartlepool) Reid, Thomas (Swindon)
Dames, P. Jones, Frederick Elwyn (West Ham, S.) Reid, William (Camlachie)
Dalton, Rt. Hon. H. Jones, Jack (Rotherham) Richards, R.
Darling, George (Hillsborough) Jones, T. W. (Merioneth) Roberts, Albert (Normanton)
Davies, Ernest (Enfield, E.) Keenan, W. Roberts, Goronwy (Caernarvon)
Davies, Harold (Leek) Kenyon, C. Robinson, Kenneth (St. Pancras, N.)
Davies, Stephen (Merthyr) Key, Rt. Hon. C. W. Rogers, George (Kensington, N.)
de Freitas, Geoffrey King, Dr. H. M. Ross, William
Peer, G. Leo, Frederick (Newton) Shackleton, E. A. A.
Delargy, H. J. Lee, Miss Jennie (Cannock) Shawcross, Rt. Hon. Sir Hartley
Dodds, N. N. Lever, Harold (Cheetham) Short, E. W.
Donnelly, D. L. Lever, Leslie (Ardwick) Shurmer, P. L. E.
Driberg, T. E. N. Lewis, Arthur Silverman, Julius (Erdington)
Dugdale, Rt. Hon. John (W. Bromwich) Lindgren, G. S. Silverman, Sydney (Nelson)
Ede, Rt. Hon. J. C. Lipton, Lt.-Col. M. Simmons, C. J. (Brierley Hill)
Edelman, M. Logan, D. G. Skeffington, A. M.
Edwards, Rt. Hon. John (Brighouse) MacColl, J. E. Slater, Mrs. H. (Stoke-on-Trent)
Edwards, Rt. Hon. Ness (Caerphilly) McGhee, H. G. Slater, J. (Durham, Sedgefield)
Edwards, W. J. (Stepney) McGovern, J. Smith, Ellis (Stoke, S.)
Evans, Albert (Islington, S.W.) McInnes, J. Smith, Norman (Nottingham, S.)
Evans, Edward (Lowestoft) McKay, J. (Wallsend) Snow, J. W.
Evans, Stanley (Wednesbury) MacMillan, M. K. (Western Isles) Sorensen, R. W.
Fernyhough, E. McNeil, Rt. Hon. H. Soskice, Rt. Hon. Sir Frank
Fienburgh, W. MacPherson, Malcolm (Stirling) Sparks, J. A.
Finch, H. J. Mallalieu, E. L. (Brigg) Steele, T.
Fletcher, Eric (Islington, E.) Mallalieu, J. P. W. (Huddersfield, E.) Stewart, Michael (Fulham E.)
Follick, M. Mann, Mrs. Jean Stokes, Rt. Hon. R. R.
Foot, M. M. Manuel, A. C. Strachey, Rt. Hon. J.
Forman, J. C. Marquand, Rt. Hon. H. A. Strauss, Rt. Hon. George (Vauxhall)
Fraser, Thomas (Hamilton) Mason, Roy Stross, Dr. Barnett
Freeman, John (Watford) Mayhew, C. P. Summerskill, Rt. Hon. E.
Swingler, S. T. Viant, S. P. Willey, F. T.
Sylvester, G. O. Wallace, H. W. Williams, David (Neath)
Taylor, Bernard (Mansfield) Warbey, W. N. Williams, Rev. Llywelyn (Abertillery)
Taylor, John (West Lothian) Watkins, T. E. Williams, Ronald (Wigan)
Taylor, Rt. Hon. Robert (Morpeth) Webb, Rt. Hon. M. (Bradford, C.) Williams, Rt. Hon. Thomas (Don V'll'y)
Thomas, George (Cardiff) Weitzman, D. Williams, W. H. (Droylsden)
Thomas, Iorwerth (Rhondda, W.) Wells, Percy (Faversham) Williams, W. T. (Hammersmith, S.)
Thomas, Ivor Owen (Wrekin) Wells, William (Walsall) Wilson, Rt. Hon. Harold (Huyton)
Thornton, George (Dundee, E.) West, D. G. Winterbottom, Richard (Brightside)
Thornton, E. Wheeldon, W. E. Woodburn, Rt. Hon. A.
Timmons, J. White, Mrs. Eirene (E. Flint) Wyatt, W. L.
Tomney, F. White, Henry (Derbyshire, N.E.) Yates, V. F.
Turner-Samuels, M. Whiteley, Rt. Hon. W. Younger, Rt. Hon. K.
Ungoed-Thomas, Sir Lynn Wigg, George
Usborne, H. C. Wilkins, W. A. TELLERS FOR THE AYES:
Mr. Royle and Mr. Arthur Allen.
Aitken, W. T. Dodds-Parker, A. D. Hutchison, Sir Ian Clark (E'b'rgh, W.)
Allan, R. A. (Paddington, S.) Donaldson, Cmdr. C. E. McA. Hutchinson, James (Scotstoun)
Alport, C. J. M. Donner, Sir P. W. Hyde, Lt.-Col. H. M.
Amery, Julian (Preston, N.) Doughty, C. J. A. Hylton-Foster, H. B H.
Amory, Rt. Hon. Heathcoat (Tiverton) Douglas-Hamilton, Lord Malcolm Iremonger, T. L.
Anstruther-Gray, Major W. J. Drayson, G. B. Jenkins, Robert (Dulwich)
Arbuthnot, John Dugdale, Rt. Hon. Sir T. (Richmond) Jennings, Sir Roland
Assheton, Rt. Hon. R. (Blackburn, W.) Duncan, Capt. J. A. L. Johnson, Eric (Blackley)
Astor, Hon. J. J. Duthie, W. S. Johnson, Howard (Kemptown)
Baker, P. A. D. Eccles, Rt. Hon. Sir D. M. Jones, A. (Hall Green)
Baldock, Lt.-Cmdr. J. M. Elliot, Rt. Hon. W. E. Joynson-Hicks, Hon. L. W.
Baldwin, A. E. Erroll, F. J. Kaberry, D.
Banks, Col. C. Fell, A. Kerr, H. W.
Barber, Anthony Finlay, Graeme Lambert, Hon. G.
Barlow, Sir John Fisher, Nigel Lambton, Viscount
Baxter, A. B. Fleetwood-Hesketh, R. F. Langford-Holt, J. A.
Beach, Maj. Hicks Fletcher, Sir Walter (Bury) Leather, E. H. C.
Beamish, Maj. Tufton Fletcher-Cooke, C. Legge-Bourke, Maj. E. A. H.
Bell, Philip (Bolton, E.) Ford, Mrs. Patricia Legh, Hon. Peter (Petersfield)
Bell, Ronald (Bucks, S.) Fort, R. Lennox-Boyd, Rt. Hon. A. T.
Bennett, F. M. (Reading, N.) Fraser, Hon. Hugh (Stone) Lindsay, Martin
Bennett, Dr. Reginald (Gosport) Fraser, Sir Ian (Morecambe & Lonsdale) Linstead, Sir H. N.
Bevins, J. R. (Toxteth) Fyfe, Rt. Hon. Sir David Maxwell Llewellyn, D. T.
Birch, Nigel Galbraith, Rt. Hon. T. D. (Pollok) Lloyd, Rt. Hon. G. (King's Norton)
Bishop, F. P. Galbraith, T. G. D. (Hillhead) Lloyd, Maj. Sir Guy (Renfrew, E.)
Black, C. W. Gammans, L. D. Lloyd, Rt. Hon. Selwyn (Wirral)
Bossom, Sir A. C. Garner-Evans, E. H. Lockwood, Lt.-Col. J. C.
Bowen, E. R. George, Rt. Hon. Maj. G. Lloyd Longden, Gilbert
Boyd-Carpenter, Rt. Hon. J. A. Glover, D. Low, A. R. W.
Boyle, Sir Edward Godber, J. B. Lucas, Sir Jocelyn (Portsmouth, S.)
Braine, B. R. Gomme-Duncan, Col. A. Lucas, P. B. (Brentford)
Braithwaite, Sir Gurney Gough, C. F. H. Lucas-Tooth, Sir Hugh
Bromley-Davenport, Lt.-Col. W. H. Gower, H. R. Lyttelton, Rt. Hon. O.
Brooke, Henry (Hampstead) Graham, Sir Fergus McAdden, S. J.
Brooman-White, R. C. Gridley, Sir Arnold McCallum, Major D.
Browne, Jack (Govan) Grimond, J. McCorquodale, Rt. Hon. M. S.
Bullard, D. G. Grimston, Hon. John (St. Albans) Mackeson, Brig. Sir Harry
Bullus, Wing Commander E. E. Grimston, Sir Robert (Westbury) McKibbin, A. J.
Burden, F. F. A. Hall, John (Wycombe) Mackie, J. H. (Galloway)
Butcher, Sir Herbert Harden, J. R. E. Maclay, Rt. Hon. John
Butler, Rt. Hon. R. A. (Saffron Walden) Hare, Hon. J. A. Maclean, Fitzroy
Campbell, Sir David Harris, Frederic (Croydon N.) Macleod, Rt. Hon. Iain (Enfield, W.)
Carr, Robert Harris, Reader (Heston) MacLeod, John (Ross and Cromarty)
Cary, Sir Robert Harvie-Watt, Sir George Macmillan, Rt. Hon Harold (Bromley)
Channon, H. Hay, John Macpherson, Niall (Dumfries)
Churchill, Rt. Hon. Sir Winston Heald, Rt. Hon. Sir Lionel Maitland, Comdr. J. F. W. (Horncastle)
Clarke, Col. Ralph (East Grinstead) Heath, Edward Maitland, Patrick (Lanark)
Clarke, Brig. Terence (Portsmouth, W.) Henderson, John (Cathcart) Manningham-Buller, Sir R. E.
Clyde, Rt. Hon. J. L. Higgs, J. M. C. Markham, Major Sir Frank
Cole, Norman Hill, Dr. Charles (Luton) Marlowe, A. A. H.
Colegate, W. A. Hill, Mrs. E. (Wythenshawe) Marples, A. E.
Conant, Maj. R J. E. Hinchingbrooke, Viscount Marshall, Douglas (Bodmin)
Cooper, Sqn. Ldr. Albert Hirst, Geoffrey Marshall, Sir Sidney (Sutton)
Cooper-Key, E. M. Holland-Martin, C. J. Maude, Angus
Craddock, Beresford (Spelthorne) Hollis, M. C. Maudling, R.
Crookshank, Capt. Rt. Hon. H. F. C. Holt, A. F. Maydon, Lt.-Comdr. S. L. C.
Crosthwaite-Eyre, Col. O. E. Hope, Lord John Medlicott, Brig. F.
Crouch, R. F. Hopkinson, Rt. Hon. Henry Mellor, Sir John
Crowder, Sir John (Finchley) Hornsby-Smith, Miss M. P. Molson, A. H. E.
Crowder, Petre (Ruislip—Northwood) Horobin, I. M. Monckton, Rt. Hon. Sir Walter
Cuthbert, W. N. Horsbrugh, Rt. Hon. Florence Moore, Sir Thomas
Darling, Sir William (Edinburgh, S.) Howard, Gerald (Cambridgeshire) Morrison, John (Salisbury)
Davidson, Viscountess Howard, Hon. Greville (St. Ives) Mott-Radclyffe, C. E.
Davies, Rt. Hn. Clement (Montgomery) Hudson, Sir Austin (Lewisham, N.) Nabarro, G. D. N.
Deedes, W. F. Hulbert, Wing Cdr. N. J. Neave, Airey
Digby, S. Wingfield Hurd, A. R. Nicholls, Harmar
Nicholson, Godfrey (Farnham) Robinson, Roland (Blackpool, S.) Thomas, Leslie (Canterbury)
Nicolson, Nigel (Bournemouth, E.) Robson-Brown, W. Thomas, P. J. M. (Conway)
Nield, Basil (Chester) Rodgers, John (Sevenoaks) Thompson, Kenneth (Walton)
Noble, Cmdr. A. H. P. Roper, Sir Harold Thompson, Lt.-Cdr. R. (Croydon, W.)
Nugent, G. R. H. Ropner, Col. Sir Leonard Thorneycroft, Rt. Hn. Peter (Monmouth)
Oakshott, H. D. Russell, R. S. Thornton-Kemsley, Col. C. N.
Odey, G. W. Ryder, Capt. R. E. D. Touche, Sir Gordon
O'Neill, Hon. Phelim (Co. Antrim, N.) Sandys, Rt. Hon. D. Turner, H. F. L.
Ormsby-Gore, Hon. W. D. Schofield, Lt.-Col. W. Turton, R. H.
Orr, Capt. L. P. S. Scott, R. Donald Tweedsmuir, Lady
Orr-Ewing, Charles Ian (Hendon, N.) Scott-Miller, Cmdr. R. Vane, W. M. F.
Orr-Ewing, Sir Ian (Weston-super-Mare) Shepherd, William Vaughan-Morgan, J. K.
Osborne, C. Simon, J. E. S. (Middlesbrough, W.) Vesper, D. F.
Page, R. G. Smithers, Peter (Winchester) Wade, D. W.
Peake, Rt. Hon. O. Smyth, Brig. J. G. (Norwood) Wakefield, Edward (Derbyshire W.)
Perkins, Sir Robert Snadden, W. McN. Wakefield, Sir Wavell (St. Marylebone)
Peto, Brig. C. H. M. Soames, Capt. C. Walker-Smith, D. C.
Peyton, J. W. W. Spearman, A. C. M. Ward, Hon. George (Worcester)
Pickthorn, K. W. M. Speir, R. M. Ward, Miss I. (Tynemouth)
Pilkington, Capt. R. A. Spence, H. R. (Aberdeenshire, W.) Waterhouse, Capt. Rt. Hon. C.
Pitman, I. J. Spens, Rt. Hon. Sir P. (Kensington, S.) Watkinson. H. A.
Pitt, Miss E. M. Stanley, Capt. Hon. Richard Webbe, Sir H. (London & Westminster)
Powell, J. Enoch Stevens, G. P. Wellwood, W.
Price, Henry (Lewisham, W.) Steward, W. A (Woolwich, W.) Williams, Rt. Hon. Charles (Torquay)
Prior-Palmer, Brig. O. L. Stewart, Henderson (Fife, E.) Williams, Gerald (Tonbridge)
Profumo, J. D. Stoddart-Scott, Col. M. Williams, Sir Herbert (Croydon, E.)
Raikes, Sir Victor Storey, S. Williams, R. Dudley (Exeter)
Rayner, Brig. R. Strauss, Henry (Norwich, S.) Wills, G.
Redmayne, M. Stuart, Rt. Hon James (Moray) Wilson, Geoffrey (Truro)
Rees-Davies, W. R. Studholme, H. G. York, C.
Remnant, Hon. P. Sutcliffe, Sir Harold
Renton, D. L. M. Taylor, Sir Charles (Eastbourne) TELLERS FOR THE NOES:
Roberts, Peter (Heeley) Teeling, W. Mr. Buchan-Hepburn and Sir Cedric Drewe.
Robertson, Sir David Thomas, Rt. Hon. J. P. L. (Hereford)

Question put, "That the proposed words be there added."

The House divided: Ayes, 297; Noes, 258.

Division No. 33.] AYES [10.1 p.m.
Aitken, W. T. Carr, Robert Fort, R.
Allan, R. A. (Paddington, S.) Cary, Sir Robert Fraser, Hon. Hugh (Stone)
Alport, C. J. M. Channon, H. Fraser, Sir Ian (Morecambe & Lonsdale)
Amery, Julian (Preston, N.) Churchill, Rt. Hon. Sir Winston Fyfe, Rt. Hon. Sir David Maxwell
Amory, Rt. Hon. Heathcoat (Tiverton) Clarke, Col. Ralph (East Grinstead) Galbraith, Rt. Hon. T. D. (Pollok)
Anstruther-Gray, Major W. J. Clarke, Brig. Terence (Portsmouth, W.) Galbraith, T. G. D. (Hillhead)
Arbuthnot, John Clyde, Rt. Hon. J. L. Gammans, L. D.
Assheton, Rt. Hon. R. (Blackburn, W.) Cole, Norman Garner-Evans, E. H.
Astor, Hon. J. J. Colegate, W. A. George, Rt. Hon. Maj. G. Lloyd
Baker, P. A. D. Conant, Maj. R. J. E. Glover, D.
Baldock, Rt.-Cmdr. J. M. Cooper, Sqn. Ldr. Albert Godber, J. B.
Baldwin, A. E. Cooper-Key, E. M. Gomme-Duncan, Col. A.
Banks, Col. C. Craddock, Beresford (Spelthorne) Cough, C. F. H.
Barber, Anthony Crookshank, Capt. Rt. Hon. H. F. C. Gower, H. R.
Barlow, Sir John Crosthwaite-Eyre, Col. O. E Graham, Sir Fergus
Baxter, A. B. Crouch, R. F. Gridley, Si Arnold
Beach, Maj. Hicks Crowder, Sir John (Finchley). Grimond, J.
Beamish, Maj. Tufton Crowder, Petre (Ruislip—Northwood) Grimston, Hon. John (St. Albans)
Bell, Philip (Bolton, E.) Cuthbert, W. N. Grimston, Sir Robert (Westbury)
Bell, Ronald (Bucks, S.) Darling, Sir William (Edinburgh, S.) Hall, John (Wycombe)
Bennett, F. M. (Reading, N.) Davidson, Viscountess Harden, J. R. E.
Bennett, Dr. Reginald (Gosport) Davies, Rt. Hon. Clement (Montgomery) Hare, Hon. J. A.
Bevins, J. R. (Toxteth) Deedes, W. F. Harris, Frederic (Croydon, N.)
Birch, Nigel Digby, S. Wingfield Harris, Reader (Heston)
Bishop, F. P. Dodds-Parker, A. D. Harvie-Watt, Sir George
Black, C. W. Donaldson, Cmdr. C. E. McA Hay, John
Bossom, Sir A. C. Donner, Sir P. W. Heald, Rt. Hon. Sir Lionel
Bowen, E. R. Doughty, C. J. A. Heath, Edward
Boyd-Carpenter, Rt. Hon J. A. Douglas-Hamilton, Lord Malcolm Henderson, John (Cathcart)
Boyle, Sir Edward Drayson, G. B. Higgs, J. M. C.
Braine, B. R. Dugdale, Rt. Hon. Sir T. (Richmond) Hill, Dr. Charles (Luton)
Braithwaite, Sir Gurney Duncan, Capt. J. A. L. Hill, Mrs. E. (Wythenshawe)
Bromley-Davenport, Lt.-Col. W. H. Duthie, W. S. Hinchingbrooke, Viscount
Brooke, Henry (Hampstead) Eccles, Rt. Hon. Sir D. M. Hirst, Geoffrey
Brooman-White, R. C. Elliot, Rt. Hon. W. E. Holland-Martin, C. J.
Browne, Jack (Govan) Erroll, F. J. Hollis, M. C.
Buchan-Hepburn, Rt. Hon P. G. T. Fell, A. Holt, A. F.
Bullard, D. G. Finlay, Graeme Hope, Lord John
Bullus, Wing Commander E. E. Fisher, Nigel Hopkinson, Rt. Hon. Henry
Burden, F. F. A. Fleetwood-Hesketh, R. F. Hornsby-Smith, Miss M. P.
Butcher, Sir Herbert Fletcher, Sir Walter (Bury) Horobin, I. M.
Butler, Rt. Hon. R. A. (Saffron Walden) Fletcher-Cooke, C. Horsbrugh, Rt. Hon. Florence
Campbell, Sir David Ford, Mrs. Patricia Howard, Gerald (Cambridgeshire)
Howard, Hon. Greville (St. Ives) Marshall, Sir Sidney (Sutton) Scott, R. Donald
Hudson, Sir Austin (Lewisham, N.) Maude, Angus Scott-Miller, Cmdr. R.
Hulbert, Wing Cdr. N. J. Maudling, R. Shepherd, William
Hurd, A. R. Maydon, Lt.-Comdr. S. L. C. Simon, J. E. S. (Middlesbrough, W.)
Hutchison, Sir Ian Clark (E'b'rgh, W.) Medlicott, Brig. F. Smithers, Peter (Winchester)
Hutchison, James (Scotstoun) Mellor, Sir John Smyth, Brig. J. G. (Norwood)
Hyde, Lt.-Col. H. M. Molson, A. H. E. Snadden, W. McN.
Hylton-Foster, H. B. H. Monckton, Rt. Hon. Sir Walter Soames, Capt. C.
Iremonger, T. L. Moore, Sir Thomas Spearman, A. C. M.
Jenkins, Robert (Dulwich) Morrison, John (Salisbury) Speir, R. M.
Jennings, Sir Roland Mott-Radclyffe, C. E. Spence, H. R. (Aberdeenshire, W.)
Johnson, Eric (Blackley) Nabarro, G. D. N. Spens, Rt. Hon. Sir P. (Kensington, S.)
Johnson, Howard (Kemptown) Neave, Airey Stanley, Capt. Hon. Richard
Jones, A. (Hall Green) Nicholls, Harmar Stevens, G. P.
Joynson-Hicks, Hon. L. Nicholson, Godfrey (Farnham) Steward, W. A. (Woolwich, W.)
Kaberry, D. Nicolson, Nigel (Bournemouth, E.) Stewart, Henderson (Fife, E.)
Kerr, H. W. Nield, Basil (Chester) Stoddart-Scott, Col. M.
Lambert, Hon. G. Noble, Cmdr. A. H. P. Storey, S.
Lambton, Viscount Nugent, G. R. H. Strauss, Henry (Norwich, S.)
Langford-Holt, J. A. Oakshott, H. D. Stuart, Rt. Hon. James (Moray)
Leather, E. H. C. Odey, G. W. Sutcliffe, Sir Harold
Legge-Bourke, Maj. E. A. H. O'Neill, Hon. Phelim (Co. Antrim, N.) Taylor, Sir Charles, (Eastbourne)
Legh, Hon. Peter (Petersfield) Ormsby-Gore, Hon. W. D. Teeling, W.
Lennox-Boyd, Rt. Hon. A. T. Orr, Capt. L. P. S. Thomas, Rt. Hon. J. P. L. (Hereford)
Lindsay, Martin Orr-Ewing, Charles Ian (Hendon, N.) Thomas, Leslie Canterbury)
Linstead, Sir H. N. Orr-Ewing Sir Ian (Weston-super-Mare Thomas, P. J. M (Conway)
Llewellyn, D. T. Osborne, C. Thompson, Kenneth (Walton)
Lloyd, Rt. Hon. G. (King's Norton) Page, R. G. Thompson, Lt.-Cdr. R. (Croydon, W.)
Lloyd, Maj. Sir Guy (Renfrew, E.) Peake, Rt. Hon. O. Thorneycroft, Rt. Hn. Peter (Monmouth)
Lloyd, Rt. Hon. Selwyn (Wirral) Perkins, Sir Robert Thornton-Kemsley, Col. C. N.
Lockwood, Lt.-Col. J. C. Peto, Brig. C. H. M. Touche, Sir Gordon
Longden, Gilbert Peyton, J. W. W. Turner, H. F. L.
Low, A. R. W. Pickthorn, K. W. M. Turton, R. H.
Lucas, Sir Jocelyn (Portsmouth, S.) Pilkington, Capt. R. A. Tweedsmuir, Lady
Lucas, P. B. (Brentford) Pitman, I. J. Vane, W. M. F.
Lucas-Tooth, Sir Hugh Pitt, Miss E. M. Vaughan-Morgan, J. K.
Lyttelton, Rt. Hon. O. Powell, J. Enoch Vosper, D. F.
McAdden, S. J. Price, Henry (Lewisham, W.) Wade, D. W.
McCallum, Major D. Prior-Palmer, Brig. O. L Wakefield, Edward (Derbyshire, W.)
McCorquodale, Rt. Hon. M. S. Profumo, J. D. Wakefield, Sir Wavell (St. Marylebone)
Macdonald, Sir Peter Raikes, Sir Victor Walker-Smith, D. C.
Mackeson, Brig. Sir Harry Rayner, Brig. R. Ward, Hon. George (Worcester)
McKibbin, A. J. Redmayne, M Ward, Miss I. (Tynemouth)
Mackie, J. H. (Galloway) Rees-Davies, W. R. Waterhouse, Capt. Rt. Hon. C.
Maclay, Rt. Hon. John Remnant, Hon. P. Watkinson, H. A.
Maclean, Fitzroy Renton, D. L. M. Webbe, Sir H. (London & Westminster)
Macleod, Rt. Hon. Iain (Enfield, W.) Roberts, Peter (Heeley) Wellwood, W.
MacLeod, John (Ross and Cromarty) Robertson, Sir David Williams, Rt. Hon. Charles (Torquay)
Macmillan, Rt. Hon. Harold (Bromley) Robinson, Roland (Blackpool, S.) Williams, Gerald (Tonbridge)
Macpherson, Niall (Dumfries) Robson-Brown, W. Williams, Sir Herbert (Croydon, E.)
Maitland, Comdr. J. F. W. (Horncastle) Rodgers, John (Sevenoaks) Williams, R. Dudley (Exeter)
Maitland, Patrick (Lanark) Roper, Sir Harold Wills, G.
Manningham-Buller, Sir R. E. Ropner, Col. Sir Leonard Wilson, Geoffrey (Truro)
Markham, Major Sir Frank Russell, R. S. York, C.
Marlowe, A. A. H. Ryder, Capt. R. E. D.
Marples, A. E. Sandys, Rt. Hon. D. TELLERS FOR THE AYES:
Marshall, Douglas (Bodmin) Schofield, Lt.-Col. W. Sir Cedric Drewe and Mr. Studholme.
Adams, Richard Brown, Thomas (Ince) Delargy, H. J.
Albu, A. H. Burke, W. A. Dodds, N. N.
Anderson, Alexander (Motherwell) Burton, Miss F. E. Driberg, T. E. N.
Anderson, Frank (Whitehaven) Butler, Herbert (Hackney, S.) Dugdale, Rt. Hon. John (W. Bromwich)
Awbery, S. S. Callaghan, L. J. Ede, Rt. Hon. J. C.
Bacon, Miss Alice Carmichael, J. Edelman, M.
Baird, J. Castle, Mrs. B. A. Edwards, Rt. Hon. John (Brighouse)
Balfour, A. Champion, A. J. Edwards, Rt. Hon. Ness (Caerphilly)
Barnes, Rt. Hon. A. J. Chapman, W. D. Edwards, W. J. (Stepney)
Bartley, P. Chetwynd, G. R. Evans, Albert (Islington, S.W.)
Bellenger, Rt. Hon. F. J. Clunie, J. Evans, Edward (Lowestoft)
Bence, C. R. Coldrick, W. Evans, Stanley (Wednesbury)
Benson, G. Collick, P. H. Fernyhough, E.
Beswick, F. Corbet, Mrs. Freda Fienburgh, W.
Bing, G. H. C. Cove, W. G. Finch, H. J.
Blackburn, F. Craddock, George (Bradford, S.) Fletcher, Eric (Islington, E.)
Blyton, W. R. Cullen, Mrs. A. Follick, M.
Bottomley, Rt. Hon. A. G. Daines, P. Foot, M. M.
Bowden, H. W. Dalton, Rt. Hon. H. Forman, J. C.
Bowles, F. G. Darling, George (Hillsborough) Fraser, Thomas (Hamilton)
Braddock, Mrs. Elizabeth Davies, Ernest (Enfield, E.) Freeman, John (Watford)
Brockway, A. F. Davies, Harold (Leek) Freeman, Peter (Newport)
Brook, Dryden (Halifax) Davies, Stephen (Merthyr) Gaitskell, Rt. Hon. H. T. N.
Broughton, Dr. A. D. D. de Freitas, Geoffrey Gibson, C. W.
Brown, Rt. Hon. George (Belper) Deer, G. Glanville, James
Gooch, E. G. Mallalieu, E. L. (Brigg) Silverman, Sydney (Nelson)
Gordon-Walker, Rt. Hon. P. C. Mallalieu, J. P. W. Huddersfield, E.) Simmons, C. J. (Brierley Hill)
Grenfell, Rt. Hon. D. R. Manuel, A. C. Skeffington, A. M.
Grey, C. F. Marquand, Rt. Hon. H. A. Slater, Mrs. H. (Stoke-on-Trent)
Griffiths, David (Rather Valley) Mason Roy Slater, J. (Durham, Sedgefield)
Griffiths Rt. Hon. James (Llanelly) Mayhew, C. P. Smith, Ellis (Stoke, S.)
Griffiths William (Exchange) Mellish, R. J. Smith, Norman (Nottingham, S.)
Hall, Rt. Hon. Glenvil (Colne Valley) Messer, Sir F. Snow, J. W.
Hall, John T. (Gateshead, W.) Mikardo, Ian Sorensen, R. W.
Hamilton, W. W. Mitchison, G. R. Soskice, Rt. Hon. Sir Frank
Hannan, W. Monslow, W. Sparks, J. A.
Hardy, E. A. Moody, A. S. Steele, T.
Hargreaves, A. Morgan, Dr. H. D. W. Stewart, Michael (Fulham, E.)
Harrison, J. (Nottingham, E.) Morley, R. Stokes, Rt. Hon. R. R.
Hastings, S. Morris, Percy (Swansea, W.) Strachey, Rt. Hon. J.
Hayman, F. H. Morrison, Rt. Hon. H. (Lewisham, S.) Strauss, Rt. Hon. George (Vauxhall)
Healey, Denis (Leeds, S.E.) Mort, D. L. Stross, Dr. Barnett
Henderson, Rt. Hon. A. (Rowley Regis) Moyle, A. Summerskill, Rt. Hon. E.
Harbison, Miss M. Mulley, F. W. Swingler, S. T.
Hobson, C. R. Murray, J. D. Sylvester, G. O.
Holman, P. Nally, W. Taylor, Bernard (Mansfield)
Holmes, Horace Neal, Harold (Bolsover) Taylor, John (West Lothian)
Houghton, Douglas Noel-Baker, Rt. Hon. P J. Taylor, Rt. Hon. Robert (Morpeth)
Hoy, J. H. Oldfield, W. H. Thomas, George (Cardiff)
Hubbard, T. F. Oliver, G. H. Thomas, Iorwerth (Rhondda, W.)
Hudson, James (Ealing, N.) Orbach, M. Thomas Ivor Owen (Wrekin)
Hughes, Cledwyn (Anglesy) Oswald, T. Thomson, George (Dundee, E.)
Hughes, Emrys (S. Ayrshire) Padley, W. E. Thornton, E.
Hughes, Hector (Aberdeen, N.) Paget, R. T. Timmons, J.
Hynd, H. (Accrington) Paling, Rt. Hon. W. (Dearne Valley) Tomney, F.
Irvine, A. J. (Edge Hill) Paling, Will T. (Dewsbury) Turner-Samuels, M.
Irving, W. J. (Wood Green) Palmer, A. M. F. Ungoed-Thomas, Sir Lynn
Janner, B. Pannell, Charles Usborne, H. C.
Jay, Rt. Hon. D. P. T. Pargitar, G. A. Viant, S. P.
Jeger, George (Goole) Parker, J. Wallace, H. W.
Jenkins, R. H. (Stechford) Parkin, B. T. Warbey, W. N.
Johnson, James (Rugby) Pearson, A. Watkins, T. E.
Johnston, Douglas (Paisley) Peart, T. F. Webb, Rt. Hon. M. (Bradford, C.)
Jones, David (Hartlepool) Plummer, Sir Leslie Weitzman, D.
Jones, Frederick Elwyn (West Ham, S.) Popplewell, E. Wells, William (Walsall)
Jones, Jack (Rotherham) Porter, G. West, D. G.
Jones, T. W. (Merioneth) Price, J. T. (Westhoughton) Wheeldon, W. E.
Keenan, W. Price, Philips (Gloucestershire, W.) White, Mrs. Eirene (E. Flint)
Kenyon, C. Proctor, W. T. White, Henry (Derbyshire, N.E.)
Key, Rt. Hon. C. W. Pryde, D. J. Whiteley, Rt. Hon. W.
King, Dr. H. M. Pursey, Cmdr. H. Wigg, George
Lee, Frederick (Newton) Rankin, John Wilkins, W. A.
Lee, Miss Jennie (Cannock) Reeves, J. Willey, F. T.
Lever, Harold (Cheetham) Reid, Thomas (Swindon) Williams, David (Neath)
Lever, Leslie (Ardwick) Reid, William (Camlachie) Williams, Rev. Llywelyn (Abertillery)
Lewis, Arthur Richards, R. Williams, Ronald (Wigan)
Lindgren, G. S. Roberts, Albert (Normanton) Williams, Rt. Hon. Thomas (Don V'll'y)
Lipton, Lt.-Col. M. Roberts, Goronwy (Caernarvon) Williams, W. R. (Droylsden)
Logan, D. G. Robinson, Kenneth (St Fancras, N.) Williams, W. T. (Hammersmith, S.)
MacColl, J. E. Rogers, George (Kennington, N.) Wilson, Rt. Hon. Harold (Huyton)
McGhee, H. G. Ross, William Winterbottom, Richard (Brightside)
McGovern, J. Shackleton, E. A. A. Woodburn, Rt. Hon. A.
McInnes, J. Shawcross, Rt. Hon. Sir Hartley Wyatt, W. L.
McKay, J. (Wallsend) Short, E. W. Yates, V. F.
MacMillan, M. K. (Western Isles) Shurmer, P. L. E. Younger, Rt. Hon. K.
McNeil, Rt. Hon. H. Silverman, Julius (Erdington)
MacPherson, Malcolm (Stirling) TELLERS FOR THE NOES:
Mr. Royle and Mr. Arthur Allen.

Question put, and agreed to.


That this House acknowledges the sense of responsibility to the nation and to the Colonies which Her Majesty's Government has

shown and its impartiality in taking this decision, and, whilst recognising that advantages will accrue to the trade of the Empire, urges Her Majesty's Government that any further arrangements should provide such safeguards of the interests of the textile industry as the experience of the coming year may show to be necessary.