§ MR. JAMES MACLEAN (Oldham)
I beg to ask the Postmaster General whether, according to the Rules passed at the Telegraphic Convention of 1879, and which have been in force for the last 10 years, the number of letters in words used in Telegraphic Codes is restricted to 10; whether he is aware that, at the 816 forthcoming Convention, a proposition will be brought forward to further restrict the number of letters to eight, a change which would put the whole mercantile community to great inconvenience and expense; and whether the Representatives of the British Government will be instructed to resist such an alteration, and to refuse to sanction it till it has been submitted to Parliament?
§ *THE POSTMASTER GENERAL (Mr. RAIKES,) University of Cambridge
In reply to the hon. Member, I have to state that the Convention governing the telegraphic relations of the States which are parties thereto is that concluded at St. Petersburg in 1875. The Regulations annexed to that Convention were last revised in Berlin in 1885, and the number of letters used in telegraphic codes has since then been restricted to 10 letters both for European and Extra-European telegrams. I am not aware that any proposition will be brought forward at the forthcoming Conference in Paris to restrict the number of letters in code telegrams to eight, and I do not apprehend that such a proposal is likely to be made.