The total number of persons who were granted assisted passages under the Empire Settlement Act, 1922, during the year ending 31st December, 1927, was 63,027.
asked the Secretary of State for Dominion Affairs (1) whether he has prepared, and if he proposes to publish, any official Report or summary of his impressions arising out of his recent tour of the British Empire; and, if so, whether he can make arrangements that such Report shall be available at a popular price:
(2) whether, following upon his recent tour of British Dominions and Dependencies overseas, he has formulated any proposals for the extension of schemes of Empire settlement; and, if so, when he will be in a position to submit an outline of such schemes to the House?
Briefly stated, the objects which I had in view in making my recent visit to the Dominions were to renew, at a period midway between two Imperial Conferences, the personal contact between his Majesty's Ministers here and in the Dominions which is not the least valuable feature of those Conferences, to inform myself by personal observation and discussion as to opinion in other parts of the Empire on matters of inter-Imperial concern, and to deal, by means of personal consultation with the members of the various Governments and others concerned, with any outstanding matters of current business in which it appeared that such consultation might lead to a more expeditious decision than would otherwise be achieved. Naturally migration was one of the matters of inter-Imperial concern to which I have referred and I was able to give the House some information regarding my discussions on this subject in the course of the Debate on the Empire Settlement Bill on 24th February last, but it was not my intention, nor, in my opinion would it have been desirable in the time available, to formulate detailed schemes or to attempt anything more than a general exchange of views. In these circumstances I do not think that any useful purpose would be served by the publication of a Report either on migration or more generally on the tour as a whole.
asked the Secretary of State for Dominion Affairs the results of his conversations with Dominion authorities during his recent tour on the subject of migration; and how many migrants it is hoped to send to the Dominions during the present year under existing and projected schemes.
The answer to the first part of this question is contained in the reply just given to my hon. Friend the Member for Moseley (Mr. Hannon). With regard to the second part, it does not appear likely that there will be an increase during 1928 in the number of persons assisted to proceed overseas under the Empire Settlement Act. The numbers of assisted migrants during the years 1926 and 1927 were 66,103 and 63,027 respectively.
No. It is not because of any financial considerations at this end. There are economic conditions in the Dominions which to some extent retard the development of our schemes.
Under the 3,000 Families Scheme a further 350 families are to be settled during 1928, and it is proposed to settle 500 additional families during 1929. The Provincial Governments of Nova Scotia and New Brunswick have also entered into agreements on a similar basis for the settlement on farms in each province of 500 families during the next six years. A scheme for a pioneer settlement is also under consideration. This scheme, which would be brought into operation in 1929, would deal with about 2,000 families, but details have not yet been arranged.