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Dominion Gifts

Volume 436: debated on Monday 28 April 1947

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asked the Chancellor of the Exchequer if he will issue a statement giving a list of the monetary gifts received from the Dominions of Canada, Australia, New Zealand and South Africa between 1st August, 1945, and 1st April, 1947, and showing the dates when such gifts were received, their value in sterling and the specific purpose to which they have been applied.


(1) Mutual Aid. Mutual Aid from Canada to the United Kingdom continued to 1st September, 1945. The total from 1st April, 1945, to the 1st September, was 670 million dollars, equivalent to £150 million. There is no separate figure as from 1st August, 1945. The United Kingdom for the most part received munitions and military supplies, foodstuffs and farm products. (2) Writing off of liability under British Commonwealth Air Training Plan. Under Article 7 of the Financial Agreement between this country and Canada of 6th March, 1946 (published in Cmd. 6904), the Canadian Government agreed to cancel an amount of 425 million dollars, equivalent to £96 million, owing by the United Kingdom in respect of the British Commonwealth Air Training Plan. This Article was brought into effect by a Royal Proclamation in Canada dated 16th July, 1946.


On 5th March, 1947, the Australian Government announced a gift of £A25 million, equivalent to £20 million, as a contribution to the war costs incurred by Britain in and around the Pacific. This sum has not yet been received, but will be applied to the redemption of debt.

New Zealand.

The Government of New Zealand on 5th March announced a gift of £N.Z.12½million, equivalent to £10 million, in recognition of the magnificent and unprecedented effort of the United Kingdom in maintaining freedom and making possible its expansion in the years to come, and of the enormous burden that the United Kingdom have carried and are bearing during the post-war period. This sum was paid over on 25th March, 1947, and is being applied to the redemption of debt.

South Africa.

A gift subscribed by the people of South Africa amounting to £1,180,000 was presented by Field-Marshal Smuts to the Prime Minister in October last.

The above takes no account of further contributions raised by private subscription or on private initiative, of which no comprehensive record is available.