§ Mr. HUNT
asked the President of the Board of Trade whether he is aware that, when due allowance has been made for bulk, speed, regularity, and quantity, the English railways charge higher rates on English fruit and vegetables to those charged on similar produce imported from abroad; and whether he proposes to take action in the interests of British farmers and small holders in the future?
§ The PARLIAMENTARY SECRETARY to the BOARD of TRADE (Mr. Tennant)
I am not aware that the facts are as stated by the hon. Member, but I would remind him that the law forbids the giving by a railway company of undue preference to foreign as compared with home produce in respect of the same or similar services. A. Departmental Committee appointed by the late Government inquired into this matter as regards farm, dairy, and market garden produce, and reported in 1906. If the hon. Member is in possession of any definite evidence in support of his statement of a later date than the investigation of this Committee, I shall be glad to receive and consider it.
§ Mr. HUNT
Is it not a fact that the hon. Gentleman's answer only applies to railways going to ports? Does the hon. Gentleman intend to take any action upon the recommendations issued by the Departmental Committee on railway agreements, which states that the question of controversial railway rates wants looking into?