February 18, 1910 (11th Parliament, 2nd Session)


William Stevens Fielding (Minister of Finance and Receiver General)



I have already given directions to have such a statement prepared, converted approximately into Canadian currency as the most convenient method of conveying the information to the House. The first part of the hon. gentleman's question wa3 as to a statement which was to be brought down. I have not contemplated bringing down any document; it was rather a question of a general inquiry, and while the inquiry is not complete perhaps; I think I might say that so far as it has gone it has confirmed the impression which I expressed the other day, that the other portions of the British empire do share with the United Kingdom in the privileges of the conventional tariff of Germany. share, as I understand, to the fullest extent, but which receive that consideration in return for the most favoured nation treatment which those various portions of the empire are obliged to grant to Germany. That is the information and the impression that I have. I have every reason to believe that we could obtain the same consideration on the same terms, that is, if we are willing to give to Germany at this moment what is called the most favoured nation treatment, that is, the best treatment that is granted to any foreign

country, we could receive in return the full conventional tariff, just as it is to-day enjoyed by other portions of the empire. But in order to do that we should be obliged to reduce our duty on * German goods to the schedule of rates set forth in the French treaty; and whatever may be done in the future, for the present we have not thought it expedient to take that step. I think that is a correct statement of the situation.

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