Below is the text of Mr Major’s written Parliamentary Answer on Balance of Payments on 4th July 1989.
Mr. Tredinnick To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what is the current level of British investment overseas; what was the level in 1979; and what impact it has on the balance of payments.
Mr. Major In the year to 1989, United Kingdom direct investment and portfolio investment in overseas assets were £19.8 billion and £12.9 billion, respectively. Comparable figures for 1979 were £5.9 billion and £0.9 billion. Further details of the figures are available in the United Kingdom balance of payments press release of 15 June 1989.
The effect of these outflows on the make-up of the balance of payments cannot be measured precisely as, without them, inflows into the United Kingdom of interest, profits and dividends would be lower and, more generally, sterling’s exchange rate would be different.