asked the Secretary of State for Air whether, in view of the fact that there is no steamship communication between Jamaica and British Honduras or between Trinidad, British Guiana, and the other Colonies in and adjacent to the West Indies, he will consider, in conjunction with the Secretary of State for the Colonies, a scheme of transport by air between the various West Indian islands?
My hon. Friend is misinformed. Steamship communication exists between Jamaica and British Honduras, between Trinidad and British Guiana, and between Trinidad and all the Lesser Antilles. In my report upon my recent visit to the West Indies and British Guiana (Cmd. 1679), I stated that there was no regular communication between Jamaica and British Honduras on the one hand and the Lesser Antilles and British Guiana on the other, but I am glad to say that since that report went to press, Messrs. Elders and Fyffes have announced their intention of running a monthly service which will place these two groups of Colonies in direct communication with one another. The Secretary of State is fully prepared, in conjunction with my right hon. Friend the Secretary of State for Air, to consider the encouragement of any scheme for air transport in the Colonies which appears to offer a prospect of eventually becoming self-supporting, but, in the circumstances to which I have referred, there would scarcely appear to be justification at present for asking the Governments of any of the Colonies to contribute to the cost of air transport.