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Volume 976: debated on Wednesday 16 January 1980

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asked the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food what estimate he has made of the effect on the retail price of lamb for the housewife if the French Government remove their levies on imported lamb from Great Britain; and if he will make a statement.

French restrictions on imports from the United Kingdom have caused the price received by our producers to be lower than it would otherwise have been. If those restrictions were lifted, I should expect the United Kingdom producer price to rise but to remain somewhat below Continental price levels. The wholesale and retail prices would also rise, but the extent would depend upon market circumstances and it is not possible to give a precise estimate of the effect on the price to the housewife.