HC Deb 17 February 1908 vol 184 cc456-7
MR. HAYDEN (Roscommon, S.)

I beg to ask Mr. Chancellor of the Exchequer whether he can state the annual amount of the Sinking Fund in respect of advances made for the purchase of land in Ireland under the Acts passed prior to 1903, and how this fund is invested; whether it is used for the purchase of Irish Land Stock; if not, whether he will order that in future it shall be so used, in order that the Irish Development Fund may be saved from an early exhaustion; and whether he can state when the practice began of investing the Sinking Fund under the Act of 1903 in this manner.


Advances under the Irish Land Acts prior to 1891 were made in cash from the Local Loans Fund, and the payments on account of Sinking Fund and interest are made to that fund. Under the Act of 1891 the advances were made in Guaranteed Land Stock, and the Sinking Fund repayments amounting to about £160,000 a year are invested in the purchase of this stock. In neither of those cases is there any liability on the Ireland Development Grant, which would not therefore receive any benefit from investing the Sinking Fund in the manner suggested. The Sinking Fund portion of the purchase annuities under the Act of 1903 has been applied since the commencement of the Act in making further advances.

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