§ 35. Mr. Parker
asked the Secretary of State for Commonwealth Relations if he will make a statement on the recent negotiations between Canadian and Newfoundland representatives as to the future status of Newfoundland.
§ The Secretary of State for Commonwealth Relations (Mr. Philip Noel-Baker)
In pursuance of a Resolution in March by the National Convention of Newfoundland, a Delegation of the Convention went to Ottawa. Their terms of reference were to ascertain from the Canadian GovernmentWhat fair and equitable basis may exist for the Federal Union of Newfoundland and Canada.On their return to Newfoundland, the Delegation presented to the National Convention an agreed record of their discussions in Ottawa, and other papers bearing on all the main issues involved in Federal Union. I understand that the Canadian Government will shortly convey to the Government of Newfoundland, for communication to the National Conven- 1071 tion, an answer to the Delegation's questions about a possible basis for union, if, in the forthcoming referendum, the people of Newfoundland should declare themselves in favour of Confederation. My hon. Friend will, no doubt, recall that the function of the National Convention is to make recommendations to His Majesty's Government in the United Kingdom about the possible forms of future Government to be laid before the people of Newfoundland in the Referendum.