HC Deb 17 November 1911 vol 31 cc794-5W

asked the Postmaster-General what subsidies, if any, were paid to the following companies in the year 1910 in respect of postal services: Cunard, White Star, American Service, Orient Line, Peninsular and Oriental, and Union Castle; and upon what date the contract of the Peninsular and Oriental Service expires, and if there is any clause in the agreement under which the Peninsular and Oriental contract may be terminated, with notice, before that date?


A fixed annual postal subsidy of £68,000 under the terms of the contract with my Department was paid to the Cunard Steamship Company, and one of £305,000 under similar conditions to the Peninsular and Oriental Steam Navigation Company. Payments are made to the White Star Line and the American Line on the basis of the weight of mails carried with a maximum limit of £70,000 per annum in the case of the White-Star Line. The Orient Steam Navigation Company and the Union Castle Mail Steamship Company perform their services under colonial contracts, and payments are made direct to the companies by the Australian and the South African Postal Administration. This country makes to the Colonial Governments a contribution based on its use of the service. The Peninsular and Oriental Company's contract terminates on the 31st January, 1915, subject, however, to twenty-four months' notice. There is no provision for its termination before that date.