§ 83. Sir H. CROFT
asked the Secretary of State for India whether his attention has been called to the contracts placed with Continental firms by Indian railways for locomotive boilers, fittings and cylinders; Whether he is aware that the difference in price between the British quotations and those of the Hungarian State Railway workshops is small; and whether, in the interests of British industry, he will take the matter up with the Indian railways on behalf of British manufacturers in order that they may not be undersold by foreign State workshops?
§ The UNDER-SECRETARY of STATE for INDIA (Mr. Butler)
My hon. and gallant Friend is presumably referring to contracts placed by the authorities in India under the rupee tender system. I have no information as to the details and would refer my hon. and gallant Friend to the reply I gave on 27th February to the question of my hon. Friend the Member for South Kensington (Sir W. Davison), who, I think, was referring to the same orders.
§ Sir H. CROFT
If it is a fact that these contracts for State railways are being placed on the Continent at a very low wage level, will the hon. Gentleman not urge the railways in India to give contracts to Great Britain, where most of the capital has been raised for the promotion of those railways?
§ Sir W. DAVISON
Is it not time that the usual practice was altered to a new practice more in accordance with the feelings of this House and the country?
Sir NAIRNE STEWART SANDEMAN
Would it not be better to give a subsidy to the manufacturers in this country, and keep the business here?