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Volume 728: debated on Thursday 12 May 1966

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asked the President of the Board of Trade what proposals he as for the reform of the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade.

Can the hon. Gentleman explain why it is that the Board of Trade is answering this Question in view of the fact that it was the Chancellor of the Exchequer who, during the election, announced that he was going to renegotiate the G.A.T.T.? Will the hon. Gentleman say whether his right hon. Friend regards the G.A.T.T. as a sacred cow, and will he assure us that he will bear in mind the fact that these agreements have reciprocal advantages, and that if we break them, others may break them against us?

I am answering the Question because the hon. Gentleman did not frame it in such a way that it was directed to the Chancellor of the Exchequer. With regard to the second part of his question, the G.A.T.T. is always under general review.