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Volume 894: debated on Monday 23 June 1975

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asked the Secretary of State for Trade what discussions he has had with the Government of Zambia regarding trading arrangements between the United Kingdom and Zambia.

Neither I nor the Secretary of State has had direct contacts with the Zambian Government on trade matters. But there are, of course, constant contacts through our respective High Commissions on commercial matters of mutual interest.

When the hon. Gentleman or his right hon. Friend next meets the Zambian trade authorities, will he congratulate them on their trade policy in Southern Africa, especially the way that they have continued to trade with Rhodesia and South Africa? Will the hon. Gentleman and his right hon. Friend impress upon their Cabinet colleagues that it would be to the advantage of this country if we pursued a similar policy, especially in the case of the export of Nimrod aircraft to South Africa?

In reply to the second part of the hon. Gentleman's question, the Government's decision about the export of arms to South Africa was made clear by my right hon. Friend the Foreign Secretary in the House just before Christmas. As for the first part of the hon Gentleman's question, neither I nor my right hon. Friend has any plans for an early visit to Zambia, which does not figure as one of our major export markets.