HC Deb 03 December 1930 vol 245 cc2211-2
33. Captain P. MACDONALD

asked the Under-Secretary of State for the Colonies what is the present position of the sugar and other preferential arrangements between Canada and the British West Indies; and how does it compare with the position as between Great Britain and the British West Indies?


By reciprocal agreement dating from 1912, revised in 1920 and 1925, certain products in which West Indies are specially interested, including sugar, bananas and cocoa, are given preferences in Canada, and in return certain products in which Canada is specially interested, such as flour, butter and cheese, are given preferences in the West Indies. All the preferences granted by the West Indies are applicable also to imports from the United Kingdom. West Indian sugar enjoys, in common with all Empire sugar, a preference in the United Kingdom of 3s. 8.3d. per cwt. for 96° sugar as compared with a preference equivalent to 4s. 8d. in Canada.

As to the details of the other rates, I would refer the hon. and gallant Member to the Customs Tariffs of the various Governments concerned, and as to the practical effect of the preferences on sugar, to paragraphs 30 and 31 of the West Indian Sugar Commission Report (Command 3517).

Captain EDEN

Has the hon. Gentleman any evidence that the West Indies have regarded this agreement as "humbug"?


Is the intention of the Government to increase the preference which is given by this country on sugar, grown in the West Indies, and in other sugar-growing Colonies


I think that that question has already been answered on other occasions.


Owing to the unsatisfactory nature of the hon. Gentleman's reply, I beg to give notice that I will raise this question on the Adjournment at an early date.

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