§ [SECOND READING.]
§ Order of the Day for the Second Reading read.
THE MARQUESS OF CREWE
My Lords, I need not take up much time in explaining this Bill, but as this is one of those cases which sometimes occur where the title conveys to the ordinary hearer a small notion of the contents of the Bill, I will explain very briefly what it does. Its effect is to give the power of applying to Protectorates under the Crown, by Order in Council, certain Acts of the Imperial Parliament which apply to Crown Colonies. The reason for the obscurity of the title is simply this. The original Foreign Jurisdiction Act of 1890 applied in the first place to countries with independent Governments of their own but within which the Crown had jurisdiction—such countries, for instance, as China. It was then found that it could conveniently be applied to Protectorates which are parts of the Empire not actually under the sovereignty 1834 of the Crown, but in which, by various arrangements, the Crown has jurisdiction. Under the Act of 1890 a number of important Statutes can be and have been applied thus to Protectorates, such as the Merchant Shipping Act, and others. The schedule to this Bill sets out other enactments which may be applied to countries in which His Majesty's Government has jurisdiction. There is the Colonial Prisoners Removal Act, 1869; the Colonial Probates Act; Section 20 of the Finance Act, 1891; the Colonial Solicitors Act of 1900, which enables solicitors in the Protectorates to practise in England; and three Sections of the Companies (Consolidation) Act, 1908. I understand that this measure met with no kind of opposition in another place, and I hope, therefore, that your Lordships will agree to read it a second time.
§ Moved, That the Bill be now read 2a.—(The Marquess of Crewe.)
§ THE EARL OF SELBORNE
I understand from the noble Marquess that this Bill only increases the number of Acts which may be applied to the Protectorates as well as to foreign countries?
THE MARQUESS OF CREWE
That is what it really does. The application can be made in each case by an Order in Council. It does not follow that any particular Act is by the Bill so applied.
§ On Question, Bill read 2a, and committed to a Committee of the Whole House To-morrow.