§ Mr. G. BALFOUR
asked the Secretary of State for the Colonies whether he is aware that the Commonwealth Trust, Limited, with a subscribed capital of £51,643, has been entrusted by His Majesty's Government with assets on the Gold Coast to the value of £500,000; that the Commonwealth Trust made a loss of £190,000 for the year ended 30th June, 1921; whether the Government has given or contemplates giving financial assistance to the trust; and if the trust has mortgaged to the bank or other parties any of the assets entrusted to it by His Majesty's Government?
§ Mr. CHURCHILL
The figures given in the hon. Member's question are approximately correct. It is not proposed to give any financial assistance to the company, and I have no knowledge of the arrangements made by them for financing this undertaking. I would add that the company is of a philanthropic character; it is prohibited from trading in spirituous liquors; the dividend on its ordinary shares is limited to 5 per cent. net; and the surplus profits will be paid over to trustees to be used for the welfare of the native population.