HC Deb 28 July 1838 vol 44 cc753-4
Mr. P. Thomson

moved the further consideration of the Report on the Customs Duties Bill.

Mr. Lascelles

wished to call the attention of the House to certain facts connected with that measure. In 1834, the Customs' Bill contained clauses constituting certain towns as places for bonding corn; but, in the present bill those clauses were omitted.

Mr. Ashton Yates

wished it to be distinctly understood, that the mercantile interests, did not acquiesce in the proposition.

Mr. A. Chapman

said, it was impossible that bonded warehouses could be extended to inland places, with safety to the revenue.

Mr. Poulett Thomson

said, that in the course of the Session a great many petitions had been presented, praying for the establishment of this system, and he should be prepared next year to submit a measure on this subject to the consideration of Parliament, and he believed that as it was founded on principles of justice, it would receive the sanction of the Legislature. He should propose a measure similar to that which he had introduced before, and which was complained of as not going far enough, but which was as far as prudence would allow. He was astonished to hear from his hon. Friend an argument against the general principles of fairness and justice, founded on some miserable vested interest, which he alleged to exist in a particular instance.

Mr. Warburton

particularly objected to the sixth clause of the bill, which enacted, that if foreign manufactures, purporting to be British, were introduced, they might be seized by any Custom-house officer in any port of the United Kingdom, or any British possession. Now, he proposed to amend that clause, first, by limiting its operation to the United King- dom, for he thought it would be unwise to let it be executed at the discretion of any petty Custom-house officer in some small island of the West Indies. And, he should also recommend that the clause should not come into operation till from and after the month of July, 1839. He considered the words, "or in any way purporting to be of British manufacture," went too far, as they were too indefinite. He was opposed to the principle of the clause altogether; but, thinking that its omission might not be agreed to, he would, in the first instance, move that the words "British possessions abroad," be omitted.

Mr. P. Thomson

had no objection to some of the amendments, but he did not think the object of the clause would be answered if the words "British possessions" were left out. The object of the clause was a fair one. Complaints were made, that goods of our manufacture were forged abroad—that they were brought to this country, and from this country sent to the colonies, and sold there with our mark, by which not only was our trade diminished, but the character of that trade in those articles was seriously injured. He admitted, that it was necessary to take care that while these regulations were enforced, no injury should be done to their foreign trade. He could not, therefore, agree to exclude the British possessions. Much less inconvenience and injury would result from that course than from giving the parties a right of action. In his opinion, the authorities and the Customhouse officers in the British Colonies would be perfectly able to discharge the duties intrusted to them, and to exercise a sound discretion as to what articles were and what articles were not of British manufacture.

Mr. Warburton

thought the clause so objectionable in principle, that he should persevere in his amendment.

The House divided on the original question. Ayes 39: Noes 8:—Majority 31.

List of the AYES.
Alsager, Capt. French, F.
Archbold, R. Grant, F. W.
Barrington, Lord Hale, R. B.
Bernal, R. Henniker, Lord
Brotherton, J. Herbert, hon. S.
Chapman, A. Hobhouse, T. B.
Dundas, F. Hodgson, F.
Ellis, J. Hope, hon. C.
Evans, Sir De L. Howard, P. H.
Ferguson, Sir R. Inglis, Sir R. H.
Labouchere, H. Thomson, C. P.
Lefevre, C. A. Troubridge, Sir E. T.
Lemon, Sir C. Turner, E.
Mackinnon, W. Vivian, Sir R. H.
Murray, J. A. Waddington, H.
O'Brien, W. S. Wiltshire, W.
Palmerston, Lord Wood, G. W.
Pendarves, E. W. Yates, J. A.
Rice, rt. hon. T. S. TELLERS.
Smith, B. Parker, J.
Style, Sir C. Seymour, Lord
List of the NOES.
Elliot, hon. J. E. Power, J.
Finch, F. Vigors, N. A.
Gibson, T.
Hawes, B. TELLERS.
Hutt, W. Warburton, H.
Lushington, C. Chalmers, P.

Clause agreed to, report received.