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British Council

Volume 395: debated on Wednesday 1 December 1943

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asked the Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs to what extent the British Council is financed by His Majesty's Government; and to what extent the Council is responsible to the Government for its activities?

The British Council is financed from a grant-in-aid provided by His Majesty's Government. The grant-in-aid for the current financial year is £1,875,000, augmented in July last by a supplementary grant of £100,000. The revenue this year from other sources amounts only to £1,250. Under the terms of the Council's charter, the management of the Council's affairs is vested in its Executive Committee. The Lord President of the Council, the Chancellor of the Exchequer, the Secretaries of State for Foreign Affairs, the Dominions, the Colonies and Scotland, the President of the Board of Trade and the Secretary of the Department of Overseas Trade have each the right to appoint a representative on the Executive Committee. The estimates of the Council are submitted in full detail through the Foreign Office to the Treasury, who consider them in consultation with the Departments of His Majesty's Government concerned. The Foreign Office, with the aid of His Majesty's Representatives abroad, control the general policy of the Council and supervise its expenditure in respect of foreign countries in accordance with certain general principles laid down by the Treasury. Corresponding arrangements exist in regard to expenditure on activities in the British Empire.