The graving dock at Esquimalt is practically in the hands of the Imperial government at all times, that is, it is occupied by His Majesty's ships; but when it is not, of course, the merchant vessels can be attended to. I understand that the tolls charged by the Canadian government are ridiculously small, very much smaller, than those of any other dry-dock or graving-dock on the Pacific coast. It would be advisable for the government to recognize fully local conditions in fixing the tolls of any other dock. I suppose the Esquimalt graving-dock is run at a loss. But if a private company went into the construction of a dock, say at Vancouver, it would be hardly fair that they should be put upon the same scale of rates as the Esquimalt dock, which is not available at all times for the merchant ships.
Subtopic: DRY DOCKS CONSTRUCTION-GOVERNMENT AID.