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Volume 465: debated on Wednesday 1 June 1949

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asked the Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs whether, with the object of reducing unemployment in Western Germany and helping to re-establish family life, he will investigate the possibility of negotiating foreign credits for a large-scale housing programme.

The Military Governors have had occasion recently to emphasise to the Germans the need for utilising their available resources to the full where housing is concerned. Much can, in fact, be done in this direction before the question of foreign credits need arise.

Is my hon. Friend aware that there is widespread unemployment in the building industry in Western Germany and could not some of these men be directed to collecting materials from the war-shattered areas, so as to use them for re-building purposes?

This is a matter for the German authorities. As I have stated, the military governors have drawn their attention to this question already.

Will the hon. Member refrain from creating unemployment by dismantling plants engaged in productive industries?

Does not my hon. Friend consider that the cause of this unemployment, as well as the lack of housing, is due to the removal of controls by the laissez-faire German administration at Frankfurt?