§ 43. Mr. MAXTON for
asked the Chancellor of the Exchequer the amount of money invested by the British Government in land and housing in the Irish Free State for which the land annuities are demanded in return?
The hon. Member's question seems to be based on a misconception. The Irish land annuities are payments which the tenants make in order to repay with interest the sums lent by private investors for the purpose of enabling them to buy their land. His Majesty's Government in the United Kingdom have guaranteed the interest on these loans.
§ Mr. MAXTON
But the right hon. Gentleman has not given me quite the answer I want. Do I understand that the British Government have no responsibility for the capital value of the land involved?
The question that was put down asked me whether I could state the amount of money invested by the British Government in land and housing in the Irish Free State for which the land annuities are demanded in return. There is no such money. There is no money invested by the British Government in that way.
§ Mr. MAXTON
But having regard to the exigencies of getting questions passed at the Table, can the right hon. Gentleman say the total financial liability that ultimately rests on the Government in this matter?
The Government guarantee covers interest on the stock issued under all the Acts—the Acts of 1891, 1903, and 1909—and also the sinking fund of the stock issued under the 1891 Act only.