FIELDING (Minister of Finance) moved for leave to introduce Bill (No. TOO) to amend the Bank Act. He said: This is a measure of which mention was made some days ago in connection with the programme of business for the remainder of the session. While I propose to repeal a statute passed in 1899 and reenact it in amended form, this is only done for convenience of drafting, and the actual change which is made is very slight indeed. Some of our banks are doing business in British colonies other than Canada, notably in the case of the British West Indies, and it is found to - be convenient in the way of business to per-
iuit those banks to issue notes expressed in the currency of the colony in which they are doing business. We have provided for that in our Bank Act by allowing them to issue notes in pounds sterling as well as in dollars and cents, which is the form of our own currency. A case has arisen, however, in one of the West Indian Islands which it is found is not quite covered- by the terms of the Bank Act. In the island of Trinidad, one of the largest and most important of the British West Indian colonies, they use dollars and cents as we do, but while their currency corresponds in form to ours it does not correspond in actual value. The West Indian dollar is worth a little more actually than the Canadian dollar, therefore a note circulated in the Island of Trinidad redeemable in Canadian currency would be a cause of confusion. The bank in question proposed to overcome the difficulty by making a depost of securities with the colonial government equal to the difference between the Canadian dollar and the West Indian dollar, to the extent of the whole issue of the notes in that colony. But the British government which has a supervision over the Island of Trinidad-for it has not quite the same system of government that we have-the British government thought that it was an undesirable way of dealing with the matter, and the Colonial Office suggested that the Canadian government should be asked to make such an amendment to the Bank Act as would recognize the issue of notes expressed in the currency of the colony itself, that is in the West Indian dollar instead of the Canadian dollar. It is wholly a technical matter, and does not depart in any way from the spirit of the Act already laid down. As the imperial government think this is the best way of dealing with it, I propose such an amendment to the Act as will make j.t clear that our banks can issue their notes in the currency of any particular colony in which they are doing business. We have already done that in relation to pounds sterling, and we simply adapt ourselves to the peculiarity of the West Indian dollar as distinct from the Canadian dollar.