§ MR. GOURLEY (Sunderland)
I beg to ask the Under Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs whether an arrangement has been concluded between the French and British Governments relative to the Newfoundland lobster fishery disputes; if so, will he be good enough to state the nature of the modus vivendi, and whether permanent or temporary?
THE UNDER SECRETABY OF STATE FOR FOREIGN AFFAIRS (Sir J. FER-GUSSON,) Manchester, N.E.
I stated yesterday that an arrangement in the nature of a modus vivendi had been arrived at; also that it was for this season only. It provides that such lobster factories as were in existence last year may be continued for the present, the Naval Commanders being arbiters in case of disputes: in other words, it maintains the status quo, questions of principle and of respective rights being entirely reserved. New lobster fisheries can only be established by joint consent of the British and French Naval Commanders, and for each new fishery so permitted to one nation, permission is to be granted for a new fishery to the other.