§ MR. MARKHAM (Nottinghamshire, Mansfield)
I beg to ask the Secretary of State for the Colonies whether, seeing that on 13th January, 1899, in a despatch to the High Commissioner, he stated that His Majesty's Government were advised that a dynamite monopoly in the South African Republic was not necessarily inconsistent with Article XIV. of the London Convention, provided such a concession was to benefit the State generally and not simply to favour a concessionaire, he will say why now for many months past he has permitted, in face of the protests of British dynamite manufacturers, the creation of a new dynamite monopoly in South Africa, from which the Transvaal Government derives no revenue whatever: and whether this new monopoly is in direct conflict with the views His Majesty's Government held† See page 55.387 before the war and which they repeatedly pressed on the late Transvaal Government.
§ MR. J. CHAMBERLAIN
There is no intention of constituting or continuing any dynamite monopoly. The duty proposed for revenue purposes is 1½d. per lb., and I have already told the hon. Member several times that the question of an equivalent excise on the local manufacture is under consideration. The manufacture in the Cape Colony is dealt with under the provisions of the Convention, but this has not yet been ratified by the Cape Government. Under the law of the late Republic all dynamite from outside the State was prohibited, and the price was accordingly at one time from thirty to forty shillings per case higher than it is now.