§ MR. GRAVES
said, he wished to ask the Secretary to the Treasury, If it is the intention of Her Majesty's Government to invite competition for the conveyance of the West Indian Mails on the expiration of the present Contract?
§ MR. SCLATER-BOOTH
said, in reply, that the Government had no intention of inviting competition for the conveyance of the West Indian Mails at the expiration of the present Contract. The West India Mail Steam Packet Company had represented to the Government that it would be impossible for them to make the outlay which was necessary for the adequate performance of the service after the disastrous results of the hurricanes which occurred in the West Indies last year, unless their term were extended beyond the two years during which the Contract was to run. This request was regarded as a reasonable one and was acceded to. The terms upon which the Contract would be recommended were still under consideration, but one condition would be that the Packet Station should be removed from St. Thomas to some other place in the West Indies.