HC Deb 06 February 1844 vol 72 cc276-7
Mr. Labouchere

wished to ask the right hon. Baronet whether the negotiations for forming commercial treaties between this country and France and Portugal had entirely ceased? It would be in the recollection of the House, that when the revised tariff was under consideration, the right hon. Baronet postponed dealing with certain important articles, in consequence of these negotiations, for instance, silk, brandy, and wine. He presumed that he ought not now to ask the right hon. Baronet whether he intended to do anything respecting the duties on those articles during the present session, but he thought that he might ask whether it were the intention of the Government to bring forward a Customs Bill at an earlier period than the usual Customs Bill was generally introduced.

Sir R. Peel

said, that with respect to the negotiations for commercial treaties, which had been for some time carried on between this country and France and Portugal, he could state, in answer to the right hon. Gentleman, that he considered as the Government of Portugal had refused to acquiesce in the final proposition of the Government of this country, that the negotiation for a commercial treaty with that country had ceased. As to the negotiations with France, no advance had been made since the last Session of Parliament, but matters remained as they were, and he could not say when they would be brought to a close. With respect to the intention of the Government as to the Customs duty, he must beg to postpone any declaration until the opportunity should arrive of making the usual financial statement.