§ 34. Mr. BOTTOMLEY
asked the Prime Minister what reparation Germany has so far made to the Allies in kind, and its approximate value in sterling; and what portion of such amount has been received by Great Britain?
The deliveries in kind which have up to the present been allocated by the Reparation Commission to the British Empire consist of 3,181 tons of dyestuffs and 304 ships amounting to 1,508,000 gross tons. Of these 262 ships have been sold for £13,000,000. From the proceeds of sale there will have to be deducted expenses incurred in repairing ex-enemy ships to the amount of £3,100,000. I have not the information required to answer the question in so far as deliveries not allocated to the British Empire are concerned.
§ Mr. BOTTOMLEY
Is the right hon. Gentleman aware that on Friday last the Prime Minister said, on his own authority, that deliveries in kind amounted to many hundreds of millions of pounds, and, if so, are not the figures available?
§ Colonel GREIG
Can the right hon. Gentleman give any indication as to 1138 whether Germany has returned to France and Belgium the cattle which were awarded under the Treaty of Peace?
I cannot answer questions of that kind. I have no personal knowledge of the matter. As to the extent to which reparations in kind have passed to France or Belgium, I am not aware. I do not dispute what the hon. Member opposite says; I do not know exactly what the Prime Minister said the other day. I am speaking only of reparations in kind.
§ Mr. T. SHAW
May I ask what is the effect on the shipbuilding industry in this country? Have there been any complaints to the Government?
§ Mr. RONALD McNEILL
In view of the great interest in this subject, can my right hon. Friend have a return prepared to show the amount of reparation made not only to the British Empire but to her Allies?
I do not object to information of that kind being made available by the Reparations Commission. It is beyond my control.
§ Mr. McNEILL
But if the right hon. Gentleman were to ask for such a return from the Reparations Commission, would they not give him the information?
§ Mr. R. RICHARDSON
Is the right hon. Gentleman aware that a large number of shipyard workers are out of work in consequence of these ships being disposed of?
No, Sir; I am not aware that they are out of work in consequence of the ships being disposed of.
§ 36. Mr. BOTTOMLEY
asked the Prime Minister what bonds have so far been handed over by Germany to the Allies under the terms of the Peace Treaty; and whether such bonds are to be met at maturity independently of the sum resolved upon at the Paris Conference?
I am informed by the British Delegate on the Reparation Commission that Germany has delivered to the Commission the 20 milliard marks gold bearer bonds under Section 1 of paragraph 12 of Annex II to Part VIII of the Treaty of Versailles, and the 40 milliard marks gold bearer bonds under Section (2) of the same paragraph, together with a covering undertaking in writing to issue when required by the Commission a further instalment of 40 milliard marks gold bearer bonds. The exact relation between these bonds and the payments proposed by the Supreme Council at Paris in the Agreement of 29th January, 1921, is one of the questions to be discussed by the Supreme Council next week.
§ Mr. A. M. SAMUEL
Is there not a great deal of doubt as to what a milliard means? What is a milliard?
I really do not think it is my business to answer questions of that kind. It would make the House ridiculous if I did. [An HON. MEMBER: "Does the right hon. Gentleman know?"] A thousand millions.
46. Sir F. HALL
asked the Prime Minister if he will take an early opportunity of making a statement as to the proposed reparation terms to Germany recently settled in Paris, so that the German delegates who are to discuss the matter at the London Conference may be advised of the views of the House on the general principles involved and that those who are opposed to exacting monetary contribution from Germany for her wanton attack on Europe may have an opportunity of expressing their views and their reason for adopting such an attitude?
My right hon. Friend the Prime Minister has already made a full statement on this subject during the Debate on the Address, to which at present there is nothing to add.