HC Deb 09 July 1923 vol 166 c896

asked the Under-Secretary of State for the Colonies whether an official has been sent home from Dar-es-Salaam to purchase motor cars for the local government; whether, in that case, he will state why such purchases could not have been carried out by the Crown agents; and whether the latter, in a case of this nature, receive a commission to cover their expenses?

The UNDER-SECRETARY of STATE for the COLONIES (Mr. Ormsby-Gore)

No official has been sent to this country by the Government of the Tanganyika. Territory for the purpose stated. The Tanganyika Government has decided to purchase certain new motor cars and lorries. These purchases are being made through the Crown agents for the Colonies in the usual way, but advantage is being taken of the presence in this country, on leave, of the Tanganyika Government transport officer to obtain his advice upon the types of vehicle best suited to local conditions. The Crown agents are authorisd to charge a commission of 2½ per cent. of the net f.o.b. cost upon motor vehicles purchased by them on behalf of Colonial Governments. This commission goes to meet, but does not cover, the cost of the Crown agents' expenses.

Colonel NEWMAN

Can we be certain that these motor cars and lorries will be British, and American?


Certainly as to the lorries, but I do not know whether there may not be certain Fords which are necessary. Very often they are a type of car which are absolutely necessary for certain purposes.

Colonel NEWMAN

Is the Under-Secretary not aware that there are a number of British makers producing cars in this country capable of doing all the work that Ford cars can do?