§ Mr. HORE-BELISHA
asked the Secretary of State for Dominions Affairs whether he will state, in respect of the current year, how much money has been contributed by each of the Dominions and Crown Colonies towards naval defence; what proportion this sum bears in each case to their total import and export trade and per capita of their population, respectively; and how these figures compare with Great Britain's contributions under these heads?
§ Mr. AMERY
The contribution of the Dominions to naval defence takes the form of maintenance of their own naval forces and establishments by the Governments of Canada, the Commonwealth of Australia, New Zealand, and the Union of South Africa.
The amounts provided in the Estimates of the undermentioned parts of the Empire for the year 1925–26 are as follow:
United Kingdom, £60,500,000. Expenditure per head £1 6s. l0d. Population (Great Britain and Northern Ireland) 45,064,000 Total import and export trade, 1925 £2,250,355,544 Amount spent on naval defence for every £1,000 of total import and export trade £26 17s. 7d.
Canada, $1,400,000. Expenditure per head $0.15 Population 9,364,200 Total import and export trade, 1925 $1,865,999,890 Amount spent on naval defence for every $1,000 of total import and export trade $0.75
Commonwealth of Australia, £3,921,145. Expenditure per head 13s. 2d. Population 5,929,288 Total import and export trade, 1925 £316,182,433 Amount spent on naval defence for every £1,000 of total import and export trade £12 8s. 2d.
There is also a special appropriation of £1,000,000 for defence purposes generally.
New Zealand, £538,325. Expenditure per head 8s. 0d. Population 1,335,719 Total import and export trade, 1925 £107,718,679 Amount spent on naval defence for every £1,000 of total import and export trade £4 19s. 11d.
Union of South Africa, £139,893. Expenditure per head 1s. 9d. Population 1,610,774 Total import and export trade, 1925 £147,735,815 Amount spent on naval defence for every £1,000 of total import and export trade 18s. 11d.
NOTE.—The figures given above for import and export trade are preliminary totals only, and are subject to revision.
As regards the Irish Free State, I would refer the hon. Member to Article 6 of the Articles of Agreement for a Treaty between Great Britain and Ireland (Cmd. 1560). Northern Ireland, being part of the United Kingdom, contributes to British naval expenditure in the same way as other parts.
As regards the Colonies and Protectorates, the contributions to Imperial defence made by the Governments of Hong Kong, Straits Settlements, Ceylon and Mauritius are paid, not to the Admiralty, but to the War Office.
Hong Kong has also provided in its Estimates for the year 1925–26, as a contribution towards the cost of the Singapore Base, £120,000.
This contribution represents in expenditure per head 3s. 0d. Population 799,500 Total import and export trade, 1924 £145,727,077
This contribution represents 165 per cent. of value of total import and export trade.
The Straits Settlements have contributed the site for the Singapore Base.