§ 62. Mr. H. MORRISON
asked the Secretary for Scotland whether he is 1716 aware of the handicap to agriculture in the Western Highlands and Islands of Scotland owing to the high steamer freights; and whether he will appoint a committee to inquire into the whole question?
§ Mr. MUNRO
I am aware that the steamer freights referred to have risen considerably in recent years, and that the increase in the cost of exporting live stock and of importing seed, fertilisers, and other materials must necessarily react adversely on agriculture in the districts concerned. Increases in transport charges due to the prevailing economic conditions are of general occurrence at the present time, and on the facts before me I do not see that inquiry by a committee could serve any useful purpose
Is it not a fact that in most cases the increase has been from 300 per cent. to 500 per cent. and costs have gone down enormously in the last few months?