HC Deb 18 March 1885 vol 295 cc1585-6

, who had the following Question on the Paper:— To ask the First Lord of the Treasury, Whether he can now state the provisions of the International Agreement with regard to the Finances of Egypt, said: Since I put this Question on the Paper, I have received a communication from the Prime Minister stating that the Agreement will not have been actually signed at the moment of the meeting of the House, and that, therefore, its provisions could not be publicly stated. But perhaps the Chancellor of the Exchequer can tell us exactly how we stand in the matter; when he will be able to make a communication with respect to the Agreement; and if he can say when he expects to bring the matter under the judgment of the House?


The position of matters with respect to this Agreement is this. The Agreement consists of a Declaration and a Convention. The Declaration was signed yesterday; the Convention will not be signed until this afternoon. I hope at half-past 5 o'clock, with the permission of the House, to make a statement explaining in general terms both the Declaration and the Convention. My noble Friend the Under Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs has come down to state to the House when the Papers will probably be distributed; and perhaps, with reference to the second question of the right hon. Baronet, I had better make that statement. The Declaration and the Convention will be distributed either to-morrow morning, to-morrow afternoon, or on Friday early. We shall do our very utmost to have them distributed at the first possible moment. The Papers explanatory of the whole business will, we hope, be distributed on Monday; and to-morrow week I hope in Committee to move the Resolution upon which will be founded the Bill which will be necessary to carry the Convention into effect.