§ MR. H. H. MARKS (Kent, Thanet)
I beg to ask the Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs whether he has any information as to the appointment of a Chinese official as superintendent of Customs in China, in violation of the agreement of February, 1898, whereby, in consideration of the withdrawal of the 355 British demand for the opening up of Talienwan as a treaty port, the Chinese Government agreed that the post of inspector-general of the maritime Customs should be held by a British subject so long as British trade with China continues to exceed that of any other Power.
§ THE SECRETARY TO THE LOCAL GOVERNMENT BOARD (Mr. RUNCIMAN, Dewsbury, for Sir EDWARD GREY)
I would refer the hon. Member to the Answer on this subject given on Friday last,† in which the promise given by the Chinese Government was stated, and it was announced that we have asked for an explanation of the decree of the 9th instant. But I must add that there is no connection between the opening up of Talienwan to commerce and the Chinese undertaking as to the post of inspector-general of the maritime Customs.