HC Deb 12 June 1840 vol 54 cc1114-5
Mr. Bailey

said, that it was now nearly six months since the return of Mr. Macgregor from his Italian tour, and he wished to ask the noble Lord when that gentleman's report would be laid on the table of the House?

Viscount Palmerston

said, that there was no report to be furnished by Mr. Macgregor. The purpose for which Mr. Macgregor was sent out was this:—For some time a nego- tiation had been going on between the Neapolitan and English Governments, with a view to the establishment of a new commercial treaty to supersede that of 1816. A part of the proposed arrangement was to alter the Neapolitan tariff. The object for which Mr. Macgregor was sent out was, that in conjunction with some commissioners appointed by the Neapolitan government, he should go over the Neapolitan tariff, and come to an understanding as to the amount of the new duties. This arrangement was to take place only in the event of the two governments agreeing to the treaty then under consideration. The further proceedings were necessarily suspended, it being impossible for the British Government to conclude a new treaty until the old one was faithfully adhered to. Mr. Macgregor had been sent out for the single purpose which he had mentioned. There was, therefore, no report from him. It would be improper at present to lay before Parliament an account of the particular duty which Mr. Macgregor had performed, and which made part of a general negotiation not yet concluded.