§ 4. Mr. GINNELL
asked if the right hon. Gentleman will say what was the estimated amount of revenue to be derived by India from opium exported to China during the transitional period of extirpating the opium vice to the end of 1915; whether India has already derived that amount of revenue from opium exported to China since the date of the agreement; if so, on what grounds the British Legation at Peking now withholds its consent to China's prohibition of Indian opium in certain Chinese provinces; and whether any other trade with China under the British flag receives from the British Government the encouragement given to the trade in opium?
§ The FINANCIAL SECRETARY to the WAR OFFICE (Mr. Harold Baker)
No calculation of the revenue likely to accrue from the Anglo-Chinese Opium Agreement during its currency was made by the Indian Government. It would not have been possible to estimate with any accuracy the effect of a progressively diminishing export, and in point of fact revenue considerations were not the basis of the agreement. As regards the third part of the question, His Majesty's Legation has not withheld its consent to the closing of any provinces to Indian opium which can be shown to have fulfilled the provisions of Article 3 of the Agreement of 8th May, 6 1911. If, in the fourth part of the question, by encouragement of the opium trade, the hon. Member refers to the efforts of His Majesty's Government to induce the Chinese Government to observe their treaty obligations the answer is in the affirmative.
§ Mr. GINNELL
Can the right hon. Gentleman say whether any of the six-Power loan will be devoted under the pressure of this Government to payment for opium which China does not want?
§ Sir E. GREY
That supplementary question has been answered in the negative more than once by the Foreign Office.