No. 139  NAI DT S10389

Extract from the minutes of a meeting of the Cabinet
(G.C. 1/7 A) (Item 1)

Dublin, 3 February 1938


The Minister for Industry and Commerce1 reported on the progress of the discussions between the Secretary of his Department (Mr. Seán Leydon) and representatives of the British Board of Trade. It was agreed that further discussions might proceed on the following basis:

  1. The British Government to undertake that free entry will be granted for Irish products into the United Kingdom Market, i.e. that the Ottawa duties shall be abolished over the whole field and that where there is quantitative restriction on agricultural products the quantities fixed for Irish exports will be sufficient to enable this country to export the whole of its surplus production to the United Kingdom Market.
  2. The Government of Ireland to undertake that a review shall be made as soon as practicable by the Prices Commission of existing protective duties and other import restrictions in accordance with the principle that such duties and restriction shall not exceed such a level as will afford Irish industries adequate protection against imported products having regard to the relative costs of economical and efficient production, provided that in the application of such principle special consideration may be given to the case of industries not fully established.

It was further agreed that if necessary the word 'reasonable' might be substituted for the word 'adequate' in the seventh line of the formula contained in sub-paragraph 2. It was decided that while the Irish Representative might intimate to the British Representatives that the Minister for Industry and Commerce agreed to the discussions proceeding on the above basis, the Irish Representative should make it clear that the Minister was not in a position to bind the Government in the matter.

[initialled] POC2

1 Seán Lemass.

2 Padraig Ó Cinnéide, Assistant Secretary to the Cabinet.

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