§ MR. FIELD (Dublin, St. Patrick)
I beg to ask the President of the Board of Trade whether he is aware that the rate for foreign timber is 8s. 6d. per ton, and the rate for native timber is 16s. 10d. per ton, and whether he will cause inquiries to be made and a remedy provided in this case of a preferential rate in favour of the foreigner.
§ THE PRESIDENT OF THE BOARD OF TRADE (Mr. GERALD BALFOUR, Leeds, Central)
No, Sir, I am not aware that the figures are correct, and I cannot undertake to embark upon a general inquiry. I would point out to the hon. Member that he gives no particulars as to the incidence of the rate, where charged, or for what sort of timber. From a letter he has forwarded to me I gather that the rates are said to be charged between; Cardiff and Birmingham. This information is not, however, sufficiently definite to support a complaint under Section 31 of the Railway and Canal Traffic Act; such a complaint should contain a specific case of alleged undue preference, with full particulars, and should be made by or on behalf of a trader aggrieved.