HC Deb 22 February 1926 vol 192 cc7-8

asked the Under-Secretary of State for India whether it is the intention of the Government of India to publish a report on the progress of its agent, resident in Malaya during the last two years, on behalf of the Indian workers on the European rubber plantations in that Colony; and, if not, whether he can give the House any information as to the standard of wages paid to Indian workers on the plantations in Malaya and what improvements, if any, have been introduced by the resident agent as the result of his appointment by the Government of India?


My Noble Friend has not been informed of the intentions of the Government of India in the matter, but inquiry can be made if the hon. Member so desires. As regards the second part of the question, I am informed by the Colonial Office that owing to the diverse economic conditions in various parts of the Malay Peninsula wages differ considerably, but for ordinary labourers in the Federated Malay States the average daily rate for men varies from 35 to 50 cents and for women from 25 to 45 cents. In the Kuala Selangor district a minimum wage of 35 cents per diem for men and 27 cents for women was fixed in 1924, and the whole question of fixing basic standard rates is under consideration. The functions of the agent are to advise the Government of India and Indian immigrants, and he has no executive powers in Malaya.