§ Mr. MIDDLEMORE
asked whether it is the usual practice in Germany to lay down armoured ships in the summer of the year in which they are provided for; whether, if this course is followed in 1910–11, the German vessels will be laid down about six months in advance of the British ships of the 1910–11 programme; and whether, seeing that Germany's shipbuilding capacity closely approximates to the British, he will consider the desirability of commencing the British ships provided for in this year's programme at an earlier date than that already specified?
§ Mr. McKENNA
The reply to the first part of the question is in the negative, and to the second part in the affirmative. The dates of laying down the British ships provided for in this year's programme have been arranged on the assumption that Germany would lay down her 1910–11 ships early in the financial year.