§ *MR. BILL (Staffordshire, Leek)
I beg to ask the Under Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs whether the Russian Government has lately imposed a tax of 50 roubles on English commercial travellers carrying on their business in Russia; and also a tax of 500 roubles, or over £50, on the firms which they represent; and whether Her Majesty's Ambassador at St. Petersburg has been instructed to make representations to the Russian Government against such charges as calculated to check the development of trade between that country and England.
§ *MR. BRODRICK
The reply to the two questions in the first paragraph is in the affirmative. There are, however, several points in regard to which the precise manner in which the new law will be applied is open to doubt, and upon these points Her Majesty's Ambassador has been instructed to ask for explana- 630 tions, before it can be decided whether Her Majesty's Government would be warranted in making any representations against the proposed charges.