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Trade Deficit

Volume 131: debated on Wednesday 13 April 1988

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15.

To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster what was the trade deficit for each of the years 1975 to 1988.

The current account deficit was £1·7 billion for 1987. Figures for previous years will be printed in the Official Report. However, in the years 1975–1979 there was a cumulative deficit of over £2 billion, while in the years 1980–1986 there was a cumulative surplus of over £23 billion.

Total United Kingdom trade on a BOP basis
£ million
YearCurrent account balance
1975-1,582
1976-895
1977-112
1978+965
1979-604
1980+3,035
1981+6,743
1982+4,480
1983+3,753
1984+2,009
1985+3,276
1986+46
1987-1,679

17.

To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster what is the expenditure per head on industrial research and development; and what information he has as to the comparable figures for the United States, Japan, France and West Germany.

In 1985, the latest year for which internationally comparable information is available, expenditure on industrial research and development per head of population in the United Kingdom was £91. Corresponding figures for France, Japan, West Germany and the United States were £88, £126, £133 and £190, respectively. The information is obtained from the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development using exchange rates at purchasing power parities calculated by them to convert foreign currencies to sterling. Where the population estimate for 1985 was not available that for the nearest available year has been taken.