HC Deb 07 April 1909 vol 3 c1246W

asked the Under-Secretary of State for the Colonies whether he is prepared to recommend the amending of the Trinidad land regulations, with a view to preventing the sale of the land of that Colony, and so bring about the establishment of a peasantry under the Government on the large area of land still unalienated, with the ultimate result of a large perpetual rent revenue to the Colony?

Colonel SEELY

In framing the Trinidad Land Regulations the Government had in view the recommendation of the West Indian Royal Commission of 1897, that efforts should be made to secure the "settlement of the native population as proprietors and cultivators of small portions of land." A very large number of small proprietors has been created under the existing system, and there is no reason to believe either that the establishment of a peasantry would be accelerated by or that the revenue would benefit from the abandonment of that system. Land in private hands is subject to land tax (of 1s. an acre, houses, paying according to value).