§ 3. Mr. Whitfield
asked the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what progress has been made following the measures taken in retaliation against the United States Government's decision to limit imports on special steels.
§ Mr. Tebbit
In accordance with the earlier decision of the EC Council of Ministers, the Community has now notified the general agreement on tariffs and trade of its intention to retaliate from 1 March against the restrictions imposed by the United States Government on imports of special steels from the Community. Retaliation will take the form of increased tariffs on some imports from the United States and quotas on others.
§ Mr. Whitfield
Does my right hon. Friend consider that the measures he has just announced are likely to have the desired effect, especially having regard to the interests of all Conservative Members at any rate of extending international competition?
§ Mr. Tebbit
These measures will have the right effect. I believe that it would be difficult to press upon the United States the importance of maintaining an open trading system while its gross budgetary deficit brings about certain changes in its economy which make it less competitive in the world and thus gives rise to the balance of trade problems to which the right hon. Member for Bethnal Green and Stepney (Mr. Shore) referred a short time ago.
§ Mr. Fry
I thank my right hon. Friend for his answer to the question on special steels. Is he aware that there is pressure on the United States Government to take action against exports of footwear from Europe? May I have an assurance that he will take this matter seriously and do what he can to persuade the American Government to take—