HC Deb 19 April 1926 vol 194 cc831-3
26. Captain CROOKSHANK

asked the Secretary of State for Dominion Affairs who is the imperial representative in Australia of the Overseas Settlement Department; where is his office; and whether it is a permanent appointment?


Mr. W. Bankes Amery, C.B.E., the finance Officer of the Over-sea Settlement Committee, was appointed representative of the Oversea Settlement Office in Australia in connection with the new migration agreement, and took up his duties in August last. The intention is that Mr. Bankes Amery should remain in Australia for two or three years. His headquarters arc at Melbourne.


asked the Secretary of State for Dominion Affairs whether he is now in a position to give the House full information as to the constitution and functions of the; representative non-political committee recently appointed by the Commonwealth Government to advise on migration, national development, and the utilisation of the natural resources of Australia, in view of the bearing of these questions upon emigration from this country?


No, Sir. I have been informed by telegram by the representa- Live of the Oversea Settlement Office in Australia that the Prime Minister of the Commonwealth has officially announced his intention to appoint a migration and development commission, representing all classes of the community— but I have received no information beyond this as to its constitution and functions.

28. Mr. HURD

asked the Secretary of State for Dominion Affairs how many migrants have gone to Canada this year under each of the assisted schemes; and how many applicants have not been accepted?


Up to the end of March, 6,580 persons had been accepted, and 2,656 had actually sailed under the Canadian Assisted Passage Scheme. Included in the acceptances are 3,039 persons proceeding under the scheme for the settlement of 3,000 British families on the land in Canada. It is not possible to state the number of applicants who have not been accepted, as the greater number of applications are made at the local offices of the Canadian Government Agents throughout the country, and only those which seem suitable for acceptance are forwarded to the Director of Migration in London.


Seeing that the first three months of the year are the most effective season for emigration, does the right hon. Gentleman regard those figures as satisfactory?


I should like to see the figures as large as possible.


Can the right hon. Gentleman say how it is that the whole of these people who have been accepted have not gone out to Canada?


It is a question of arrangements to be made and of shipping facilities, but I am afraid I could not answer offhand.


Will the right hon. Gentleman say what number of persons who have gone have left agricultural occupations?


That question will require notice.


Will the right hon. Gentleman consider issuing a return giving this information for every Dominion and adding to the return figures relative to private and semiprivate schemes of migration?


Yes. I think those figures will be included in the annual Report of the Oversea Settlement Committee, which I hope will be in the hands of hon. Members in two or three weeks' time.


In view of the large difference in the numbers of those who have been accepted and of those who have actually got across, what has been done with the amount of money that was set aside for this purpose some years ago, and of which, I believe, only about one fifth has been used in each year?


As regards the difference in this case, I imagine that a large number of the acceptances have been fairly recently made, and it is simply a question of the arrangements to get them overseas. In regard to the other question, namely, the difference between the money, not set aside, but that Parliament was prepared to pay in co-operation with the Dominions and the amount that the Dominions were prepared to spend in cooperation with us, it has been due to a large variety of causes, which have been more than once discussed in this House.


Is it not a fact that there are many more applicants who are passed as being fit and wanting to go across than can get across, and, in view of that fact, does it not seem curious that when there is the money there to spend those two reasons cannot be brought together and the question settled?


This is becoming a Debate.

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