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Volume 928: debated on Monday 14 March 1977

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asked the Chancellor of the Exchequer what is his estimate of the effect the forecast fall in real incomes of 2ยท8 per cent. in 1977 will have on imports of (a) manufactures, (b) other goods and (c) services.

The effect of a change in real incomes on imports would depend on (a) the distribution of the change among income recipients, (b) the extent to which savings were affected and (c) the timing of the change. It is not possible, therefore, to provide any generally valid estimate.