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Scientific And Optical Instruments

Volume 154: debated on Monday 22 May 1922

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asked the President of the Board of Trade whether his attention has been drawn to the amount of the duties collected for the six months ending 31st March on a wide range of scientific and optical instruments from all countries; and whether, seeing that by far the greatest proportion of that amount was collected in respect of cinematograph films, and that the duties actually collected on the other ranges of goods are very small and in some cases infinitesimal, on what grounds, seeing that the imports from Germany must be very small, he has decided that there is aprimâ facie case to refer to a Committee?

I am aware of the amount of the duties collected on the articles referred to in the question. The Board of Trade considered that aprimâ facie case was made out that the volume of imports from Germany of optical and scientific instruments, considered in relation to the present output of the industry in this country, was such as to exercise a serious effect on employment. Cinematograph films are not included within the Committee's terms of reference.