HC Deb 02 March 1903 vol 118 cc1107-8

I beg to ask the Under Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs whether His Majesty's Government are aware that the Crown Colony of British Guiana contributes one-third of the expense of immigration into that colony of Indian coolies for work on sugar plantations, and that His Majesty's Government guarantee to the Indian Government the payment of wages to, and of return passages to India for, such coolies. Does the Sugar Convention, by Art. VII., impose on the Permanent Commission at Brussels the duty of pronouncing whether such contributions or guarantees constitute a direct or indirect bounty on the production or exportation of sugar; does the Convention, in the event of an affirmative decision on the point, bind His Majesty's Government, by Art. I. and Protocol Al and A3, to suppress the payments and guarantee in question; and have His Majesty's Government received any communications on the subject from the authorities of the colony.


The first and fourth Questions of my hon. friend should be put to the representative of the Colonial Office. With regard to the other Questions, the interpretation of any words in an agreement is not usually made the subject of an official statement until the circumstances have arisen which require such a statement.


Is the Foreign Office quite sure that it understands this Question?

No answer was returned.