§ 1. Mr. LOOKER
asked the Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs whether any and, if so, what steps have been taken by the Nanking Government to abolish likin (internal customs duties) in accordance with their undertaking; whether any fresh internal taxation in substitution for likin is being levied or contemplated; and, if so, can he state the nature of such substituted taxation and by whom it will be borne?
§ The SECRETARY of STATE for FOREIGN AFFAIRS (Sir Austen Chamberlain)
No steps have yet been taken, so far as I am aware, to abolish likin. I understand that the reorganisation of the fiscal system is now under the consideration of the Chinese Government. It is too early for definite information to be available but what appears to be contemplated is the levy of consumption taxes for local requirements after the goods have passed out of the possession of the importers.
§ Mr. LOOKER
Will the Foreign Secretary take steps to ascertain the nature of these consumption taxes, and whether they are consistent with treaty rights between this country and China and the proclamation of the Nanking Government that no further internal taxation will be levied either on import or on arrival at destination?
§ Sir A. CHAMBERLAIN
I am endeavouring to obtain all the information possible about the nature of the proposed taxes, but I cannot get it at all at present.