§ 53. Mr. LOOKER
asked the Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs whether any negotiations are in progress regarding the future of the British concession at Tientsin; if so, whether such negotiations are based upon similar principles to those agreed to in respect of Hankow; if he is aware that considerable anxiety exists in Tientsin on the subject and that the principles of the Hankow agreement are considered to be unsuitable to the conditions at Tientsin and are likely, if repeated there, to materially affect, the future of the port and the British interests involved; and will he consult responsible British opinion at that port before finally committing himself to any definite proposals for a change in the existing state of affairs?
§ Sir A. CHAMBERLAIN
Conversations have been started between His Majesty's Minister and the Peking authorities in regard to the British proposals communicated to the Chinese authorities at Peking and Hankow at the end of January and published in the Press here on 3rd February. In these proposals His Majesty's Government declared, among other things, their willingness to discuss and enter into arrangements, according to the particular circumstances at each port concerned, for the modification of the municipal administration of the various British concessions. Discussions on this subject with the Peking authorities have not yet advanced beyond the question of general principles. The answer to the third and fourth parts of the question is in the affirmative.