§ MR. ASHMEAD-BARTLETT(for Mr. BADEN-POWELL) (Sheffield, Ecclesall)
asked the President of the Board of Trade, Whether he will state the reasons for which the Merchandise (Fraudulent Marking) Bill was withdrawn by the Government on Friday?
§ THE SECRETARY TO THE BOARD (MR. C. T. D. ACLAND) (Cornwall, Launceston)
(who replied) said: I am bound to state that the withdrawal of the Bill took place under a misunderstanding on my part. I had moved the second reading under the impression that it was the intention of the Board of Trade, and that the Bill had been printed and circulated. But when I found that it was not in the hands of Members I said I would withdraw the Motion for second reading. You, Sir, understood me to say that I would withdraw the Bill; and while I was engaged in explaining to the Chancellor of the Exchequer what was intended the Motion to discharge the Order was passed. The introduction of the Bill after the Notice of a Dissolution of Parliament was solely with the view of getting it printed and circulated, so that the policy of the Board of Trade, both in respect to false marking and to the Resolutions of the Rome Convention, might be understood and considered before the next meeting of Parliament. It was not expected that a measure of this importance could be carried through both Houses of Parliament at the close of the Session. I have, however, taken care that the Bill should be circulated, and it will be in the hands of Members to-morrow.