HC Deb 15 June 1927 vol 207 cc984-5

asked the Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs if he can state the position regarding the negotiations for a change in the municipal administration of the British concession at Tientsin; whether he is in a position to publish the principles of any agreement which has been arrived at; whether any such agreement has the concurrence of the Tientsin community or of any body authorised to speak on its behalf; and whether he proposes to carry out the terms of any such agreement in the immediate future or to postpone such carrying out until the situation in China is more favourable?


I would the refer my hon. Friend to the Member for Cardiff East (Sir C. Kinloch- Cooke) by my right hon. Friend the Foreign Secretary on the 2nd May. Since that date the negotiations have been in suspense while certain reserved points are being considered by His Majesty's Minister and the Chinese authorities in Peking. It would, therefore, not be proper for me to make public at this stage any information as to the lines on which these negotiations have been proceeding, but I may say that in the negotiations with the Chinese delegates, the British community at Tientsin were represented by two of their most prominent members, one of them being Chairman of the Municipal Council; His Majesty's Consul-General was the third member of the British delegation. An advisory committee, of a dozen local residents, was appointed by the community to assist the British delegation.

I have already explained that the negotiations are at present suspended for the settlement of certain reserved points, and I cannot, in present circumstances, make any statement as to future action in this respect.