HC Deb 11 March 1942 vol 378 cc1043-4
28. Mr. Mathers

asked the Under-Secretary of State for the Colonies what action has been taken on the reports made by the Comptroller for Development and Welfare in the West Indies on the questions of agriculture, public health and drainage in British Guiana; and what is the total sum granted to the Colony for these purposes?

Mr. Harold Macmillan

The Colonial Government have prepared a number of applications for assistance from Colonial Development and Welfare funds, following the recommendations made by the Comptroller and his advisers. These applications cover a wide sphere in agriculture, public health, drainage and irrigation and other fields. Some of them are now under consideration, and four have already been approved. The total sum so far granted to the Colony under these schemes is £24,775.

Mr. Mathers

Does the Colonial Office recognise that a good way to keep the good services of those in the Colonies is to deal with these matters?

Mr. Macmillan

Yes, Sir. We are most anxious to do that, but there are also difficulties about materials and so on which have to be overcome.

33. Mr. John Dugdale

asked the Under-Secretary of State for the Colonies why it is that out of a total of 101 schemes submitted by the governments of the West Indian Islands from the passing of the Colonial Development and Welfare Act till the end of 1941 only 40 had been approved; and whether there has since been any addition to the number submitted or to the number approved?

Mr. Macmillan

The number of applications for assistance which have been received from the West Indies up to date is 117. Schemes have been made under the Colonial Development and Welfare Act to cover 53 of these, and it is hoped that schemes in respect of 26 others will be made in the near future. Of the balance, several of those more recently received are still under consideration or are awaiting recommendations from the Comptroller for Development and Welfare. It has, however, been found necessary to refer in a certain number of cases to the Colony concerned for further information; and in a few cases, applications relate to projects which are not suitable for assistance under the Act.

Mr. Dugdale

Is it the intention of the Department that schemes should be proceeded with as rapidly as possible in war-time?

Mr. Macmillan

Yes, Sir, but there are difficulties, which are increasing, regarding materials and so forth.

Forward to