§ 29. Sir HARRY FOSTER
asked the Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs whether the Rumanian Government have given an undertaking to His Majesty's Government to grant compensation to the British oil companies whose wells, plant, and other effects were destroyed in November and December, 1916; whether any settlement between the companies concerned and the Rumanian Government has yet been reached; and, in view of the fact that a period of nearly 10 years has now elapsed since such damage and loss to the oil companies, whether an adequate sum will be included in such compensation for interest?
§ The SECRETARY of STATE for FOREIGN AFFAIRS (Sir Austen Chamberlain)
The Rumanian Government gave us last November an undertaking that they would settle the question of compensation direct with the companies. I understand that negotiations between the Rumanian Minister and the companies have been proceeding, but His Majesty's Government much regret that, although seven months have elapsed since the undertaking was given, no settlement has yet been reached. The question of interest on the capital sums involved is one for discussion between the parties concerned.
§ Sir H. FOSTER
Can the right hon. Gentleman say whether it is in the power of His Majesty's Government to take any steps to see that the undertaking is rendered effective?
§ Sir A. CHAMBERLAIN
We can only let our views be known to the Rumanian Government. I trust a settlement will be reached before long. It is obviously in the interests of the Rumanian Government.