HC Deb 25 February 1848 vol 96 cc1333-4

wished to ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, "the loan of eight millions of stock having produced in 1847 the sum of 7,963,674l., whether any and what portion of such money is in the Exchequer, or was in the Exchequer on the 1st of January, 1848; and whether there is any objection to place on the table of the House an account of the expenditure of the said loan? Also, whether the 420,000l. of the China money detained at the Cape may be taken as a deduction from the 1,100,000l. expended in carrying on the Kafir war?"


could not give a precise answer in figures to the questions of the hon. Gentleman; but he thought he could give an answer which would probably be satisfactory to him and to the House upon the first point. The amount of eight millions, or rather the net amount produced, was, according to the provisions of the Act of Parliament, carried to the credit of the Consolidated Fund; the practice of late years having been not to keep open several different accounts, but to place the whole sum received under one head. He stated about this time last year that the amount required in one way or another for the relief service, and for the improvement of Ireland, was ten millions. He stated then that about two millions had been advanced, and he proposed to take a loan of eight millions for the purpose of future advances. That sum was to be applicable to the relief fund in the course of last summer, and for loans for the purpose of improvements of the land and to advance certain railways. Now, advances for the improvements of land were going on from day to day, and up to the present time about nine millions had altogether been advanced. Consequently there was something like a million still in the Exchequer, something between 900,000l. and 1,000,000l., which was applicable, in one way or another, to Irish purposes. To the second question he thought he had given an answer the other day. When he made his financial statement last year, there remained the sum which he mentioned of the China money applicable to that year. He had fully expected to have drawn that sum in the course of the last summer from the commissariat chest; but the commissariat's department had had such heavy drains upon it, that he was unable. He proposed to take a vote that night to repay the commissariat's chest the advances it had made for the extraordinary expense of the Kafir war; and the Chinese ransom would be available for ways and means this year.

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