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Lobsters (Exports To France)

Volume 499: debated on Thursday 24 April 1952

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asked the President of the Board of Trade the value of lobsters exported to France during 1951; and whether he can make a statement regarding the future prospects of this trade.

I regret that the information asked for in the first part of the Question is not available, since lobsters are not separately distinguished in the trade returns. As regards future prospects, my hon. and gallant Friend will now know that, on 12th April, the French authorities invited applications for licences to import crustaceans from other Western European countries, including the United Kingdom.

Could my right hon. Friend give us an assurance that the total volume of this trade will not shrink below the figure of last year?

We are still trying to ascertain the level at which these imports will be allowed.

Is the right hon. Gentleman aware that he told me in this House a few weeks ago that polyps were not separately distinguished in the trade returns, but that he was able subsequently to give me figures—for which I thank him—showing the substantial amount of dollars earned by their export? Perhaps he could do the same for his hon. and gallant Friend?