§ *MR. WEIR (Ross and Cromarty)
I beg to ask the Secretary of State for the Colonies if he can state the number of Chinese coolies employed on the respec- 262 tive tobacco estates in British North Borneo; and on what conditions they are engaged.
§ THE UNDER-SECRETARY OF STATE FOR FOREIGN AFFAIRS (Earl PERCY, Kensington, S.)
Of the 13,000 adult Chinese in British North Borneo and Labuan about half are said to be employed on the tobacco and other estates. A very considerable number of those employed on the tobacco estates are "indentured coolies," who are, it is believed, engaged for three years at a fixed minimum salary which is increased on a certain scale in accordance with the care they exercise in looking after the tobacco in the field allotted to each man.