§ Mr. Moyle
Would not the hon. Gentleman agree that this is how the French secured a large share of the European market for the Francophone banana exporters? If we are to discharge our moral obligations to Jamaica and the Windward Isles and protect them against the dangers of our entry into the E.E.C. and the depredations of the United Fruit Company, ought we not to be doing the same ourselves?
§ Mr. Stodart
This was a proposal which arose through the dispute between Jamaica and Fyffes, and the dispute was settled to each side's satisfaction by a commercial agreement. The idea of a committee was recommended by Lord Denning, but was rejected by him when Fyffes declined to take part.
§ Mr. Body
Is not the Minister aware that Lord Denning recommended this very proposal? Moreover, is he not aware that the E.E.C. has on its agenda now, and has had since September, 1970, the formulation of a common banana policy? Is he not aware that if that policy is formulated before we enter, tens of thousands of people will be put out of work and will suffer privation and hardship because of dilatory action by the Government?
§ Mr. Stodart
I thought that I did make myself aware of Lord Denning's views. He did not maintain those views when one side declined to take part. Subsequently, the commerial agreement between both sides was arrived at. The present French régime differs from the system operated in West Germany and need not be the ultimate E.E.C. system.