§ The house resolved itself into a committee of ways and means, Mr. Wharton in the chair.
The Chancellor of the Exchequer
proposed to lay the same duty on the exportation from this country of cotton wool, the produce of British colonies, as now existed on the exportation from this country of cotton wool, the produce of any other part of the world. His object in proposing this was, not for the purpose of raising a revenue, but to effect a prohibition in the only way it could be effected. He had, therefore, calculated the duty so as to be just under the amount of the insurance which merchants would pay for the risk, if the article were prohibited. He therefore moved, 'That towards raising the supply there be laid on every pound of Cotton Wool exported from this country, being the produce of British colonies, the duty of ninepence'—The article of salt was in great demand in the north of Europe, where it could not be dispensed with. By the measures of the enemy the exportation from this country would be increased, rather than obstructed, for those measures empowered the country by the law of retaliation, to prevent the continent from getting salt any where but from G. Britain. He therefore moved, 'That towards raising 690 the supply, there be laid on the exportation of all salt to the continent of Europe, a duty of 9d. per bushel; and on the exportation of all salt to distant parts in the world (with the exception of British colonies) a duty of 3d a bushel.'—A conversation ensued, in which Mr. Ponsonby and lord H. Petty disputed the expediency of these propositions. The Chancellor of the Exchequer and Mr. Huskisson maintained the expediency of them. On the latter proposition Mr. Davenport and gen. Gascoyne recommended caution and deliberation. Mr. Baring was apprehensive that these duties on salt would act as protecting duties on the salt of American manufacture, and that when we had once lost the market for that article, we should be unable to regain it.—In answer to a question from lord H. Petty, the Chancellor of the Exchequer stated, that he meant the duty also to apply to the exportation of salt from the Bahamas to America.—The Resolutions sere then agreed to.