HC Deb 10 July 1922 vol 156 cc835-6

asked the Under-Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs whether he can give any information as regards a Measure introduced into the United States House of Representatives favouring American shipping and proposing to penalise British and other shipping; and whether, in view of the importance of this Measure to the interests of British shipping, he can make any statement on the subject?


The main feature of the Bill referred to by my hon. Friend is as stated in my reply to the hon. Member for Frome on 22nd May. The other important provision is one by which 50 per cent. of the total immigration traffic to the United States of America should be reserved to United States vessels. Since its first introduction, this Bill has been modified, bat the principle remains the same. As it is very lengthy, I could arrange to deposit in the Library a copy of the most recent text, though modifications are likely still to be made, and the present text might convey an inaccurate impression. His Majesty's Government are considering carefully the effect on British shipping to be apprehended if the Measure becomes law, and the Departments concerned are in consultation with a view to decide upon such steps as might become necessary in the future if the Bill is passed.


Will the hon. Gentleman put a copy in the Library?


Certainly, if my hon. Friend desires it.


Is the Government in communication with the Governments of Australia, Canada, and other parts of the Empire who are deeply concerned in this matter?


I must have notice of that question, or perhaps the hon. Member will put a question to the Colonial Secretary.