§ Sir ARCHIBALD WILLIAMSON
asked the President of the Board of Trade whether the International Mercantile Marine Company of New Jersey, America, owns the White Star Line, the Dominion Line, the Atlantic Transport Line, the American Line, the Red Star Line, and 356W 98½ per cent. of the ordinary shares of the Leyland Line, with a total tonnage afloat and under construction of 1,260,501 tons, and 25 per cent. of the Holland-America Line, 44 per cent. of the Shaw Savill and Albion Company, and 30 per cent. of George Thompson and Company, the last three with a total tonnage afloat and under construction of 400,074 tons; whether he is aware that many of the shareholders of the International Mercantile Marine Company bear German names; and whether he will take such steps as are necessary to prevent the possibility of the control of lines of national importance, so far as they are under the British flag, passing into German hands?
§ Mr. PRETYMAN
The statements of fact contained in the first part of the question are, I am informed, substantially correct. I cannot say how many of the shareholders in the International Mercantile Marine Company bear German names. The Government have taken steps which would effectively prevent the real control of any of the British lines referred to passing into enemy hands.