Cab 195/19 cabinet minutes

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Action on x) cd. be linked with change in agric. policy.

Avoid minor increase now.

Expansion by Kennedy cd. change whole situation.
S.Ll. i) We must move with greater speed on extended credits. Greater urgency by banks.

ii) Tax grumbles by exporters – v. hard to assess extent of trouble. On K.’s point : I believe effect of direct taxation is disincentive. On services, people shd. make larger contribns as they go. Even education. More will have to go, also, on indirect taxation.

2. Hire Purchase.

R.M. General demand is high : but falling in car industry. Illogical therefore to move B. rate before easing effect of h.p. on cars. Restriction doesn’t help b/payments. The extension to 3 yrs. is what the industry & Parlt. want. It wd. help motor industry more than t.v. – their record in exports is much better & there is much in their argument tht. they need large home market for them.
S.Ll. i) If we give way as soon as people shout, we shall appear to have no will

power over restriction policy.

ii) Strength of sterling reflects recognition of our firmness.

iii) Won’t help other industries. When this is seen, we shall be pressed

to do more.
M. Support S.Ll. But we need firmer policy on h.p. Swinging too much. Pre-war firms made minimum rules. Cd. we not do same now?
K. Figures at end of para.4 of R.M.’s memo. V. disturbing. Action necessary to prevent serious deterioration.
H.W. Extension to 3 years wd. increase sales.
D.E. If exports can’t get credit facilities, surely illogical to lend more for domestic prodn.
P.T. Electronic exports are by same firms who make T.V. sets.

But wd. look v. odd to lower Bank rate.

S.Ll. That would be for external effect.
P.T. That wdn’t be understood.

It is taken, internally as a signal for releasing restns.

Agreed : R.M. and S.Ll. to consider in light of discussion

and report.

3. Economic Situation (resumed). (substance and timing.)

P.M. Much will depend on U.S.

a) But if free world depends on readiness of countries to put the excess chips back into circuln. we must all play that game. U.S. (tho’ too

much prs. by aid via trade) has played the game so far. Now Germans have the chips and won’t play (because Adenauer doesn’t understand economics). First problem : how do we deal with G? Anderson tactics won’t help. Must see what Kennedy does. In election he drew mainly on F.D.R. and H.G., which would suit us well : but will he yield to lobby pressures in favour of restrictive policies.
If productive capacity has to match credit available (gold or others) we shall be in trouble. Can we not increase second to match first.

Can we not persuade U.S. to put joint pressure on Germany.

I doubt if we shall succeed w’out pol. pressures which will force Adenauer to heed economic advice. This brings in N.A.T.O. situation. No help to remove U.S. families. Need is to threaten w’drawal unless economic relns. are kept on good neighbour basis.
U.S. must also pursue expansionist policies in trade and aid.

E.P.M. kept counters moving – and had effect of promoting recovery.

We need this sort of thing on a wider basis.
b) Oversea expenditure – more generally.

N.B. to progress this work (defence policy) & let me know how it

is all going. Contribution to N.A.T.O. – costs in Germany : keep in view with (a).
c) Public expenditure at home. [What of savings – effects on D.E. argument.] No need or scope for emergency action. But we shd. take look at long term trends. Will discuss with S.Ll. how best to do this –

small, informal, political group.

d) Imports. Study possible means of controlling them, if it became

necessary. Ty. to submit report to E.P.C.

e) Agriculture. Relief to b/payments with no or minimum increase in

Exchequer subsidy. Shd. be studied on both cases.

C.S. Hope (d) may include check on food imports.
P.M. Wages. m./Encourage employers to take firm line.

Incentives. No action taken on restrictive practices by labour.

Cd. we devise a policy wh. wd. evoke greater effort. New slogan.
f) Exports. Not sure that more cd. not be done. Cd. S.Ll. and R.M. look

at it again. E.C.G.D. deals only with 20% - the bad risks – effect on premiums, & addn. to the price. If it goes wrong, we lose our way over exchanges. Cd. we not spread this risk or carry it ourselves. Can philosophy be examined in new background.

On long-term credits – this affects most the sector in wh. our export opportunities are greatest. Must have a joint scheme to carry what merchant banks once carried alone.
This does not conflict with G.A.T.T. or defensive agreement. Hope B/E. will be strongly pressed on this.
S.Ll. How do we do m/?
J.H. Not me – S.Ll. or R.M.
M. Too late? They are working to a definite plan. When T.U.’s return the employers will settle for 10/= or allow a strike.
P.M. They shd. be told that this is quite enough – no more.

C.C.61(60) 1st December 1960

1. Parliament. [Enter M.R.

R.A.B. Business for next week.

2. Foreign Affairs.

H. a) Egypt. Dipl. recognition. We shall have to offer one E. Consul

in E. Africa if we are to get Ambassador in Cairo.

I.M. Easiest wd. be Tanganyika. Am consulting Nigeria.
H. b) Congo. Lumumba has escaped thro’ incompetence of Congolese

and impartiality of U.N. Forces. Likely to try to establish alternative Govt. in Stanleyville. A new complication.

c) W.E.U. Assembly. Resolution passed is helpful to us, on the whole.

Urged negotiations to expedite negotns. enabling U.K. to join Community on terms acceptable to us. Includes words “taking a/c of U.K. obligns. to members of E.F.T.A. and of C’wealth”. We shd. be able to explain it.

[Enter R.W.

3. Nationalised Industries : Salaries of Board Members.

M. No need for action v part time members. Full time members Offl. Cttee. recommended reference to Coleraine & parcel of business men. We disliked both these recommns.
Simple solution – publish only total remuneration of a Board. Political diffies. in this : therefore suggest we explore it with Govt. supporters.
S.Ll. Is it realistic to suppose we can conceal salaries. Wd. cause more trouble than disclosing a higher salary.
R.A.B. No hope of being able to conceal this.
Hail. Wd. be impossible to conceal salaries of A.E.A. members – because Vote borne : & they wd. give clue to the salaries of other Boards.
P.T. Worth exploring. Might even be supported by Opposition.
Hail. We can’t accustom public to high slaries w’out disclosing them.
D.E. Isn’t it real money they want?

R.M. Not altogether : salary effects pensions.

R.W. Even if Parly. diffy. cd. be overcome, it wd. be impossible to keep this secret among natd. industries – and that wd. lead to hard feelings and jealousies between the industries.
I.M. Believe Party wd. accept need for higher salaries – tho’ not for secrecy.

Prefer to face diffy. of differentiating publicly.

J.H. Cttee. are in favour of paying rate for the job – or the man.
P.M. x. Then do it ad hoc., and don’t try to conceal it.

Start with the new B.T.C. appointments.

Agreed – as at x/.

4. British Transport Commission.

E.M. Timetable (in reply to S.Ll.) was determined by Ch.Whip’s desire to have debate before Xmas. I wd. prefer to take longer & get it right.
S.Ll. I feel this v. strongly : we need another week to improve draft esp. on financial passages.
M.R. Wd. be useful to have stimulus for another debate before Xmas.
P.M. Useful to publish before Xmas – and get public opinion interested – and then have debates after Xmas.
M. Wd. be easier to have more time to discuss with B.T.C. and T.U.’s.
R.A.B. * Best to present in last week before Xmas. Agreed.
M. Debate in H/L. on 8/12 – Ld. Morrison : can’t be deterred.
Hail. He intends to make mischief. We shall have to put up a strong Govt. reply.
P.M. Para.2. We don’t propose to publish Stedeford Report. Better start by stating Govt.’s responsibility. Prs. also put it later – less challenging.
Firm Cab. decision tht. Stedeford Report shd. not be published.
Hail. Finance is crux of problem. Better to put it, briefly, in introductory part of W. Paper.
P.M. Paras.3-10 cd. be re-cast in more a stringent form – striking the note of a new deal, prs. on lines of my statement in H/C.

P.T. Agree : & bring in the point tht. nos. employed are too large.

P.M. Para.11. Point of principle.
E.M. Must go in, to assure T.U.’s
P.M. Stress practical, not doctrinaire, approach : thus is a natd. industry & we seek to make it work as well as possible.

Para.22. Insert a general description before detail.

Para.24. Put reference to general managers first – in addn. other members. To stress fact tht. these are the men who run the rlways vice “represented”.
R.M. Para.23. Rlway w’shops shd. not have freedom to manufacture otherwise than for rlways. We shall want to limit scope of their activities.
D.E. Paras.22-4 imply tht. the real power will rest with central Board : the regional boards will not in fact have much of a show.
E.M. Want to give regional boards full power in all matters save those truly belonging to centre & I have words to that/L. on 8/12 – Ld. Morrison : can’t be deterred effect.
P.M. Para.32. Powers will be needed, in Bill, to transfer properties.
D.E. Para.34. Shd. users be rep?. only on the Council. Wd. they not be more useful on the Boards themselves.
E.M. There will be part time members on the Regional Boards.
D.E. Need for them also on central Boards.
E.M. Not on Rlway Bd.
P.M. Agree. But they cd. be added to the other central Boards.
P.M. Para.35. On this Stedeford Group was divided. View of Ministers was tht. politically it wd. be v. bad to have a strong executive Council. Decided therefore that it shd. be advisory. On that basis better to leave it for Ministers to convene it. Further, don’t give it same initials B.T.C. – eg. Nationalised Transport Advisory Council.
J.H. Believe we may have to pay price of having repve. of organised labour, not only on Council, but on Regional & central Rlway Boards.

Better to have a general para. on lines of provisions in nationalision. Acts – viz., not in terms of T.U. leaders.

Organised labour is at present represented throughout the structure.
P.M. Let us have memo. stating what posns. they now hold.
R.W. Advisory Council to advise Minister on co-ordinn. between various bodies. Will provoke pressure for similar Council to advise on co-ordinn. between my industries. Wd. it not be better to leave this to Minister, to deal with it ambulando.
H.B. May this Council not become a mere formality.
H.W. Does this give M/T. responsibility to Parlt. for daily operation of the rlways.
M. Minister needs a buffer.
E.M. Also a place for organised labour. And meets labour nostalgia for B.T.C.
In further discussions, doubts expressed about functions of Council.
H.B. On major disputes between the central boards Minister can’t escape responsibility.
I.M. Wage negotiation sh. be kept away from Council. Then Minister cd. be its Chairman.
D.E. Better to have no-one on Council save Chairmen of the Boards plus Minister. And let labour be repd. at a lower level.
P.T. In that event no need to formalise it at all.
P.M. Can you face that – when we are abolishing B.T.C. This was designed as compromise.
P.M. Minister in Chair?
M. Need for independent advice.
H.B. Powerful move in this posn. wd. make life v. diff. for Minister.
P.M. If you can find a good man, he cd. be Vice Chairman.
Agreed : leave this over for final decision later.
P.M. Paras.59-61. Take note of importance of this decision on fares.
S.Ll. Financial deal. Accept substance. Wish to consider presentation.
S.Ll. Para.54. Shd. this not be strengthened?
E.M. Yes : have words.
J.H. Is it wise to jump this hurdle too soon? Don’t be too alarmist.
M. Be cautious : don’t provoke T.U. opposn. to plan as a whole.
P.M. Prs. add a final para. summing up & incldg. reference to need for management & men to work together to make efficient industry – sacrifices all round (incldg. by taxpayer, on writing off the deficit.)
[Exit R.W.
5. Education : Grants to Students.
Memo. approved.

6. National Theatre.

No adverse decision to be announced for the time being.

C.C.62(60) 8th December 1960

1. Parliament. [Enter M.R.

R.A.B. Business for next week.

2. Civil Service Pay.

S.Ll. Two mtgs. of E.P. Cttee. Trying to extricate ourselves from P.R.U. complications. Two methods – P.R.U. or central pay settlement : first is piecemeal, second is general. Agreed tht. second shd. operate when wages index has risen by 5 points and will be prospective : that P.R.U. surveys will be quinquennial & relate to date of Jan 1. in the survey year.
E.P.C. decided last night that we shd. award increases from that date – wthr. retrospective or not. But limits degree of retrospection & introduces element of certainty.
We are likely to get 4% settlement – less than arbitration wd. award.
M. Have opposed retrospn. but this arrangemt. is acceptable.

3. Economic Situation.

S.Ll. Bank rate is being reduced by ½% today. Public reason will be out of line with rates abroad. No indication of change of domestic policy.

4. Law of the Sea : Iceland.

K. Explained situation as outlined in his minute to P.M.
C.S. Agree : but want acquiescence of industry and can’t go further.

5. Foreign Affairs.

a) Congo.
H. K.’s prestige enhanced by repn. in U.N. & he has his chance. But he has allowed Col. M. to run riot : L. has bn. maltreated : R. have bn. given opportunity to raise it all again in Sec. Council. We shall be faced with v. diff. resoln. : we may defeat it : but our African friends are weakening in their support.
Best chance of holding posn. is to get K. to hold mtg. with regional leaders on constitutional issues before any U.N. Council Cttee. arrives.
b) Laos.
H. Sitn. is going worse. U.S. are keeping Fuma (Phouma) going – tho’ they agreed with us tht. Fuma (Phouma) was best bet. Fuma (Phouma) is now favoured by U.S. U.S. have always hankered after S.E.A.T.O. intervention : danger tht. this may be revived.
We may have to revive idea of sending back the Commn.
c) Finland : E.F.T.A.
R.M. Finland has signed agreement with R. We have to consider wthr. despite that, we can have them in E.F.T.A. Trouble with G.A.T.T. had R. to put similar pressure on Norway and Sweden. But general feeling is that on balance pol. advantage of not driving F. into R. arms is overriding.
E.Q. Cttee. will be considering this tomorrow.
S.Ll. Shall have to secure acquiescence of Canada & U.S. [Also a second condn. not heard]. These 2 things will have to be explained to E.F.T.A. Ministers on Monday.

6. Public Investment Programme. [Enter P.M.G.

S.Ll. New basis offering margin of flexibility. Dpts. can plan with certainty on minimum.
E.M. Para.5 reserves posn. of B.T.C. But if Euston/Crewe electrification goes ahead (as I think) my figure will go back to original £200 m.
P.M.G. If maxima intended to be inflexible, I wish to reserve posn. of P.O. until I have had chance to discuss with Ty.
P.M. Telephones are productive & remunerative : we shd. be ready to extend it.
S.Ll. Ready to look at this.
R.A.B. Wish to discuss with Ty. provision of remand houses & magistrates courts. Hope we can make off-setting adjustments elsewhere.
[Exit P.M.G.

7. Housing Policy.

H.B. Memo. concerns only 2 ques. on wh. Housing Cttee. cd. not agree.
a) Houses to Let.
Admit there is element of concealed subsidy. But ques. is really political : if we do nothing to prime this pump we have no answer to Socialists. W’out this weight is all on side of municipal ownership. We ought to act in this Parlt.
P.M. Non profit making corpns. wd. be allowed to borrow at 6% (but w’out subsidy) instead of the market 8%ousing.
S.Ll. Qua investment, Ty. posn. is preserved : these houses count v. nos. in public sector. Subsidy point : I can swallow this because Corpns. will be non profit making. I recognise pol. advantages. They outweigh the objns. of Ty. officials.
Can Minister ensure tht. rich don’t occupy these houses?
H.B. Sort of assocn. I wd. support will restrict activities to deserving tenants.

They have a social service b’ground.

Limit of £3.500 p. living unit.
S.Ll. Quite high outside Ldn.
Scheme approved.
b) Improvement and Conversion of old houses.
H.B. 3 m. houses need this. 130.000 grants this year. Main impediment is limit of 8% return – esp. if he has to pay that interest on his money. I want to increase that to 12½%. Agreed.
House on which grant made must remain w’in a rent limit for 10 yrs. -tho’ owner can sell to occupier after 3 years. Propose to reduce rent limit period also to 3 years. Wd. remove incentive to sell. Will apply only to de-controlled houses. H. Policy Cttee. felt it wd. be confusing – wd. be misrepresented as further measure of de-control.
Won’t press for it if Cab. so consider.
R.A.B. Bill is courageous enough w’out this, which may raise ques. of de-control.
Ch. H. Agreed. Limitn. to addl. rent controversy.
Agreed : exclude this proposal, on pol. grounds.

8. Europe : O.E.E.C. Re-organisation

S.Ll. O.E.E.C. task completed : will collapse unless re-organised.

This also gives chance to get U.S. firmly in on econ. consultns.

Hope therefore I shall be authorised to sign this. It is as far as U.S. can go – tho’ Swedes and Swiss will think it inadequate : it doesn’t give scope for trade.
D.S. Will cause some misgivings in C’wealth. Some will press to be included – no geographical limits now. Japan comes in : why not Australia?
D.E. In U.N.E.S.C.O. European members are v. unpopular with newer countries – organising to keep the gap in living standards open.

9. Commercial Policy : Japan.

R.M. On detail much thought will be needed. But in principle this must be right approach. Wd. get us in f. k posn. in J. Market.
S.Ll. If we accept alternative (a), we must have a sensitive list.

Disputes can’t go to independent body (para.4).

There are 2 important points –
I.M. We are content with this.
D.S. This will move I. and P. to ask for similar power to impose restrictns. at their end.
R.M. Few cases in wh. J. will be able to do so. But admit we cdn’t treat I and P. differently. If therefore I. and P. cdn’t do it, we cdn’t allow J. to do it locally.
Approved as basis for negotiation : R.M. to keep

E.P. Cttee. informed – esp. on content of sensitive list.

10. Suez Finance Company.

S.Ll. Think we shd. sell when circs. favourable – i) on price and ii) on risk of repercussion on our compensation to our nationals for loss etc.

Ques. of timing. But can I choose best time – on assumptn. tht. Cab. have no objn. in principle. Don’t now favour sale early in N.Year.

D.E. Large holdings in Sahara oil – is it wise to sell these at low price.

Advice of oil cos. wd. be useful.

P.M. Get advice on potential future value.
D.S. Warburgs have a plan for using our share for Commonwealth Developt.
E.M. This Co. are also in Channel Tunnel business.
Hail. If that materialised, it wd. be to our advantage to be shareholder.
Agreed : S.H. to consider future of the business.
S.Ll. On the other side, pol. advantageous to use proceeds of sale to supplement our compensation to those who suffered by Suez.

[Not to be recorded – lest pressure be provoked.]

11. Tourism.

R.M. Earnings v. large. Cd. be increased.
i) Hotels. Burst of activity now : prs. mainly in London.

ii) Holiday season. Cttee. is examining.

iii) Travel restrictions. A handicap. Belgians, where they

are reduced to identity card, put their inflow up substantially.

R.A.B. Informn. collected & cd. be made available to any enquiry.

Physical condns. at ports urgently need improvement.

P.M. Most easily expanded form of exports.
Will convene a team of action people to see what more can be done.
D.S. Cd. provide incentives for this, even tho’ not for exports proper.

C.C.63(60 9th December 1960.
[Enter M.R., R.W., Thomas

Transport Reorganisation : White Paper.
Draft in revised form considered.
J.M. Chairman of main Board and regional Boards will be appointed by Minister. How will this affect their loyalties when sitting on central Board : will they look to its Chairman or to the Minister.
In 1951 Hurcomb did not know what was going on in Executives because the Chairmen of latter conceived their loyalties as to Minister.

Risk of same thing under this structure, unless personal relations are working well.

S.Ll. Better to provide that Chairman of Regional Bds. shall be appointed by central Board with approval of the Minister.
J.M. Para.16(b). Is it tolerable for a Chairman of a Regional Bd. that his Genl. Mgr. shd. be on central Bd. and not he?
P.M. May be : if, exceptionally, you have a part time Chairman – as you may want to have.
Leave text as it stands. Measure of flexibility.
H.B. Co-ordinn. betwn. rlway services and bus services. Who will see to this?
E.M. The Council, in last resort.
P.M. Para.27. Shd. the companies be specified? In footnote.

Add to paras 29-30 reference to co-ordinn. between bus and rail services.

Preferably by adjustment of final sentence of para.29.
R.W. Cd. you have regional or local Cttee. to do this under the Council.
P.M. Chairmen will also consult outside formal bodies : there will also be local arrangements.
M. References to rlway workshop : refreshment rooms and dining cars : have bn. omitted. Will be raised in debate. Also employs many men. Ques. : will they be run centrally or regionally?
P.M. Assets will belong to Rlways Bd. Management will be for discn.

Say that rlway w’shops, refreshment rooms & restaurant cars will be transferred as assets to central Board, but management will be discussed betwn. them and regional Boards.

C.C.64(60) 15th December 1960

1. Foreign Affairs. [Enter M.R.

a) United Nations.
E.H. 89 in favour : 9 abstentions incldg. U.S., Australia., S.Africa. Resoln. on Colonialism.
Membership of Sec. Council – voting still dead locked.
Congo : our motion carried, but vetoed by R.

Conciliation Cttee. officers en route for Congo in private capacity.

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