§ Mr. GINNELL
asked the Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs whether he will state the steps, if any, taken by the British Government subsequently to the undertaking given in 1905 by Chang-Chi-Tung in consideration of the loan of £1,100,000, and prior to the acquisition of the Hankow-Canton Railway line by the Germans in the spring of this year, to secure that line for England in accordance with the undertaking; if the terms of the international combination for the construction of this railway are now concluded; whether one portion is to be built by German and American engineers jointly, and another by French and English engineers jointly; in what proportions is the mileage to be thus or otherwise divided; whether the portion recovered from the Germans has been recovered on the same terms on which the Germans had obtained it from the Chinese; whether he is aware that the Chinese have always preferred an Anglo-American combination, to give them what they called English roads and American rolling stock; and if he will say on what point and through whose fault, if any, the negotiations with that object failed?
§ The SECRETARY of STATE for FOREIGN AFFAIRS (Sir Edward Grey)
As I informed the hon. Member on the 2nd instant, negotiations in regard to the Hankow-Canton Railway have proceeded continuously from the year 1905 until the spring of 1909. No agreement has yet been concluded, and as negotiations are still proceeding I am unable to add anything further.