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Dominions And Colonies (Agreements)

Volume 464: debated on Thursday 28 April 1949

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asked the President of the Board of Trade what reciprocal arrangements for the long-term purchase of British manufactured goods are made with the Dominions and Colonies with whom we have entered into agreements for guaranteed purchase of food and raw materials on a long-term basis under bulk-buying arrangements.

Does it not seem very undesirable that we should give concessions on the question of long-term purchase and get nothing in return in the way of guarantees?

I think that my hon. Friend is wrong to suggest that we get nothing in return as a result of long-term purchase arrangements within the Commonwealth, because that is of great benefit. But it is not necessary in the case of those countries, as it is in the case of many others, in the course of bilateral negotiations to use those discussions to remove or relax import restrictions upon British goods wherever we can.