1 OCTOBER 1948, Page 2

From Ottawa to Washington

There were a certain number of questions concerning trading relationships between the United Kingdom, Canada and the world which could not be settled during Sir Stafford Cripps's recent visit to Ottawa. Successful as that visit was in clearing the air, confirming the true long-term basis of Anglo-Canadian trade and informing the Canadian Government authoritatively of British economic intentions, the Chancellor was unable to give any promise that Britain would soon be earning enough United States dollars to meet her large obliga- tions to Canada in that universally acceptable currency. Nor was it within his power to assure the Canadians that they would receive sufficient United States dollars in the course of off-shore purchases for E.R.P. to right their adverse balance. Those questions could only be answered in Washington, where the British Economic Mission, led by Sir Stafford, now is. But again it is unlikely that they can be answered at the meetings of the International Monetary Fund and International Bank for Reconstruction and Development. It is plain enough that the scale on which these institutions can work is not large enough to give them a dominating position in world reconstruc- tion, and on Monday Sir Stafford said as much. The central power remains with E.R.P. Nor, despite the British Chancellor's emphasis on the importance of the part which the Bank and Fund can play, does there seem to have been much evidence at the meetings so far of a greater spirit of daring than would normally be expected in this or any other gathering of bankers. Indeed, after a statement by Mr. John Snyder, of the United States Treasury, that certain currencies were overvalued and that an orderly adjustment must be made, officials of the Fund and Bank apparently found it necessary to offer reassurances that no European currencies are on a black list for revaluation.