§ MR. NORMAN (Wolverhampton, S.)
I beg to ask the Under Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs if he will state for what reason the confidential correspondence respecting the tariff negotiations in China is withheld from Parliament after it has been communicated to private individuals; and when he proposes to present it to Parliament.
§ THE UNDER SECRETARY OF STATE FOR FOREIGN AFFAIRS (Lord CRANBORNE,) Rochester
The Chambers of Commerce and other bodies interested in the China trade have been confidentially consulted by the Secretary of State with regard to certain articles of the draft Treaty. I hope the hon. Member will agree with me in thinking that, while such consultation was indispensable, it would, on the other hand, be premature to publish the correspondence whilst negotiations are still in progress.