HC Deb 21 April 1914 vol 61 cc748-9
46. Mr. F. HALL (Dulwich)

asked the Prime Minister if his attention has been called to the speech recently made by Colonel Allen, the New Zealand Minister of Defence, criticising the present policy of the Admiralty in depending for the protection of British interests in the Pacific on the treaty with Japan, and suggesting that it was unreasonable that New Zealand should be expected to contribute towards expenditure in the Imperial Navy when it was allowed no voice in the policy adopted; if any communications on the subject have passed between the Home and the New Zealand Government; and if he will lay upon the Table the Papers relating to the matter?

The PRIME MINISTER (Mr. Asquith)

I have seen what has appeared in the public Press on this subject, but no official communication as regards the speech has been received. A Blue Book on the subject of Australasian Naval Defence is on the point of being issued by the Colonial Office.


Has there or has there not been any breach of agreement with the Australasian Government as suggested by the Imperial Officer of Defence?


I must ask for notice.


Can the right hon. Gentleman now say whether any correspondence has passed between the Admiralty and the New Zealand Government in regard to a Conference being held this year to discuss this very question?


I do not think that arises, but I will inquire about that.