Sivut kuvina

decided that, for the future, the Prime Ministers of the Dominions, as members of the Imperial War Cabinet, should have the right to communicate on matters of Cabinet importance direct with the Prime Minister of the United Kingdom whenever they saw fit to do so. It had also been decided that each Dominion should have the right to nominate a visiting or a resident Minister in London to be a member of the Imperial War Cabinet at meetings other than those attended by the Prime Ministers, and that these meetings would be held at regular intervals, arrangements being made also for the representation of India,

The Imperial War Conference in 1918, as in 1917, was held under the chairmanship of the Secretary of State for the Colonies.

Imperial As in the previous year, the greater part of its deliberations was of a War confidential nature, but it was found possible to publish a certain part Conference, of the discussions, and the great majority of the Resolutions passed.

1918. (See Cd. 9177). Of these Resolutions, the most important (Nos. III, IV and XXIII) dealt with the future economic policy of the Empire with regard to raw materials. It was agreed that it was necessary to secure for the British Empire and the belligerent Allies the command of certain essential raw materials in order to enable them to repair the effects of the war as soon as possible and to safeguard their industrial requirements. The opinion was expressed that the Governments of the British Empire should make such arrangements amongst themselves as would ensure that essential raw materials produced within the Empire should be available for the purposes described, and should arrange with the Allied countries to utilize for the same purposes essential raw materials produced in those countries.

Other economic matters dealt with by Resolutions of the Conference were the nonferrous metal industry (No. II), petroleum (No XVIII), dyes (No. X), the creation of an Imperial Mineral Resources Bureau (No. XVI), a matter already considered at the 1917 Conference, and post-war supervision of shipping (Nos. X1 and XXIV).

As to the latter, the Resolutions passed were to the effect that the Conference accepted in principle the establishment of an Imperial Investigation Board to review shipping on the principal routes, to enquire into and report on all matters connected with ocean freights and facilities, and to consider the development and improvement of the sea communications between the different parts of the Empire with particular reference to the size and type of ships and the capacities of harbours.

The question of communications within the Empire other than shipping also engaged the attention of the Conference, and Resolutions were passed dealing with an Imperial News Service (No. IX), Cable Communications (No. XIV), and Inter-Imperial Parcels Delivery (No. XII). Of these the first stated that the Conference was impressed with the importance of securing an adequate News Service, supplied from British sources to be available in all parts of the Empire, and requested His Majesty's Government in the United Kingdom to formulate a scheme with these objects in view. The second laid it down that it was in the highest interests of the Empire to reduce materially the rates for telegraphic communications between the United Kingdom and the various Oversea Dominions, and laid stress on the desirability of the co-operation of the various Governments in the provision of a State-owned cable across the Atlantic. The third recommended that the existing facilities for Inter-Imperial Parcels Delivery should be enlarged, improved, and co-ordinated, and recommended the preparation of a detailed scheme for this purpose.

The Conference of 1917 had accepted the principle of reciprocity of treatment between India and the Dominions in the matter of immigration. In 1918 a further Resolution

(No. XXI) was passed elaborating the principle already laid down. Specified conditions were agreed to which should regulate in future the admission of British citizens domiciled in any British country, including India, into any other British country for visits for the purpose of pleasure or commerce, including temporary residence for the sake of education. It was further agreed that Indians already permanently domiciled in the other British countries should be allowed on certain specified conditions to bring in their wives and minor children.

On the close of hostilities in November, 1918, representatives of all the self-governing
Dominions were immediately summoned. They took part, first in the preliminary
discussions in London over the Peace negotiations, and secondly in the
Peace work of the Peace Conference at Paris.

at Paris,

The Regulations governing the work of the Paris Conference laid 1919, and down that the British Empire should be represented by five Delegates Treaties, &c., and that the British Dominions and India should be represented as arising out of the Peace follows:-Two delegates each for Australia, Canada, South Africa and Settlement. India (including the Native States); one delegate for New Zealand. It was added that each delegation had the right to avail itself of the Panel system, and that the representatives of the Dominions (including Newfoundland and India) might besides be included in the representation of the British Empire by the Panel system.

Co-ordination between the various British representatives was secured by frequent meetings and discussions in Paris. A special body was formed for the purpose of these discussions and was known as the "British Empire Delegation"; its secretariat was provided from the officials assisting the representatives of the various parts of the Empire.

Several Dominion Ministers were nominated to, and acted for the British Empire on, the allied Commissions which were appointed to consider various aspects of the condition of peace. Thus Sir R. Borden (Canada) was a member of the Commission on Greek Questions, Mr. Hughes (Australia) of the Commission on Reparation, Mr. Massey (New Zealand) of the Commission on the Responsibility for the War, and General Smuts (South Africa) of the League of Nations Commission.

The Treaty of Versailles was signed on behalf of Canada, the Commonwealth of Australia, New Zealand, the Union of South Africa; and India.

Under it Canada, Australia, New Zealand, the Union of South Africa, and India, as well as the "British Empire," became original members of the League of Nations, and were represented at the first and subsequent meetings of the Assembly of the League held at Geneva. The Irish Free State became a member of the League in 1923. At the Assembly of 1925, Senator Dandurand, the senior Canadian Delegate, was elected President of the Assembly. At the Assembly of 1927, Canada was elected to one of the non-permanent seats on the Council of the League, and in 1930 was succeeded by the Irish Free State, which, in its turn, was succeeded in 1933 by the Commonwealth of Australia.

The other important Treaties, Conventions, etc., arising out of the Peace Settlement, which were completed in 1919 and 1920, were also signed by representatives of Canada, Australia, New Zealand, the Union and India.

At the end of 1918, the "Oversea Settlement Committee " was brought into existence in order to advise His Majesty's Government in the United Kingdom on the new problems in connection with Imperial Migration arising out of the termination of the War. Special delegates were sent by the Committee to Canada, Australia and New Zealand to investigate the openings for women in those Dominions: the policy of free passages from the


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United Kingdom to other parts of the Empire for ex-service men was inaugurated and maintained during the period 1919-1921. The adoption of a joint policy of State-aided settlement within the Empire was discussed between representatives of His Majesty's Government and the Governments of Canada, the Commonwealth of Australia and New Zealand in January-February, 1921, and their Report was approved at the Conference of Prime Ministers held in the Summer with a reservation on the part of the South African representatives.

In introducing the Budget for 1919-1920, the Chancellor of the Exchequer brought forward proposals for Preference on certain articles (such as tea, cocoa, sugar and tobacco) already subject to duty when imported into the United Kingdom, which were (1) consigned from and (2) grown, produced or manufactured in the British Empire. These proposals were accepted by Parliament and incorporated in the Finance Act, 1919, the general rate of preference given being th of the full rate.

The Imperial Mineral Resources Bureau was incorporated by Royal Charter and began its labours.

1919-21 on

Arrangements were made in 1919 for a special service of news of general Action during Imperial interest to be sent to Australia and New Zealand, to Resolutions of South, East and West Africa and to the Eastern Colonies, contribuImperial Con- tions being made by the United Kingdom and by most of the Imperial War Dominions and Colonies concerned. These arrangements came to an


end, however, in 1921.

Conferences, 1917 and 1918.

An Imperial Statistical Conference was held in February, 1920 (Cmd. 648). It was followed by an Imperial Entomological Conference (Cmd. 835), an Imperial Forestry Conference (Cmd. 865) later in the year, and in 1921 by an Imperial Customs Conference (Cmd. 1231).

After consultations as to the composition and functions of the body to review the problems of Inter-Imperial Ocean Communications, an Imperial Shipping Committee was appointed in 1920 under the Chairmanship of Sir H. Mackinder. By the end of 1921 it had issued Reports on Bills of Lading (Cmd. 1205), Deferred Rebates as obtaining in the United Kingdom-Australia Trade (Cmd. 1486), and the functions and constitution of a Permanent Imperial Body for shipping questions (Cmd. 1483)

A Royal Commission set up in 1919 to enquire into the United Kingdom income tax included in its Report (Cmd. 615) recommendations for dealing with double income tax within the Empire (Resolution XV of Imperial War Conference 1917). These recommendations were adopted by His Majesty's Government in the United Kingdom and incorporated in section 27 of the Finance Act, 1920 (see also Finance Act, 1921 section 28). Corresponding legislation was passed by the Commonwealth Parliament in 1921 (Act 31 of 1921, section 5). Legislation had been in force in New Zealand since 1916 (Act 5 of 1916, section 92).

Settlement of the questions of (a) provision for deserted wives and children (b) reciprocal enforcement of Judgments, in different parts of the Empire (both of which subjects had been much discussed between the Home and Dominion Governments since the Imperial Conference of 1911) was facilitated by the passing of the Maintenance Orders (Facilities for Enforcement) Act, 1920, and by Part II of the Administration of Justice Act, 1920, in the United Kingdom.

A Committee appointed at the end of 1919 to enquire into the high power wireless stations needed by the British Empire on commercial and strategical grounds presented its Report in 1920 (Cmd. 777), and preparations were begun in 1921 to carry the recommendations into effect.

From June-August, 1921, a Conference of Prime Ministers and representatives of the United Kingdom, the Dominions and India was held in London. The Prime Minister of the United Kingdom (Mr. Lloyd George) presided, and the Prime Ministers of Canada (Mr. Meighen), the Commonwealth of Australia (Mr. Hughes), New Zealand (Mr. Massey) and the Union of South Africa (General Smuts) were present as well as representatives of India. The Prime Minister of Newfoundland (Sir R. Squires) was unable to attend.

The greater part of the proceedings was highly confidential and comparable rather to the work of the Imperial War Cabinets of 1917 and 1918 than to that of the Imperial War Conferences of those years. The Conference considered in detail Conference the Foreign Policy of the British Empire. Discussion took place in of Prime regard to the League of Nations, and general appreciation was Ministers and expressed of its work, and of its claim to the support of the British Representatives of the Empire. Close consideration was given to the question of British United King- Policy in Egypt. Several meetings were devoted to considering the dom, the Dominions and India, 1921.

(Cmd. 1474.)

Naval, Military and Air Defence of the Empire. Specific Resolutions were passed as to Empire Settlement and Migration, the nationality of children born abroad of British parents, Air Communications, the Imperial Wireless Scheme, Shipping, Wireless Telephony and Cable and Wireless Rates for Press Messages.

Agreement was reached as to the apportionment between the various parts of the Empire of the Reparation receipts falling to the British Empire under the Treaty of Peace with Germany.

The question of the position of British Indians in the Empire was further discussed, and a Resolution passed which, while reaffirming the Resolution of the 1918 Conference (see p. lxv above), recognised that there was an incongruity between the position of India as a member of the British Empire and the existence of disabilities upon British Indians lawfully domiciled in some other part of the Empire, and expressed the opinion that, in the interests of the solidarity of the British Commonwealth, it was desirable that the rights of such Indians to citizenship should be recognised.1

It was decided that, having regard to the constitutional developments in the Empire during the last few years, no advantage would be gained by holding the Constitutional Conference contemplated by Resolution IX of the Imperial War Conference, 1917 (see p. lxiv above); but stress was laid on the importance of continuous consultation between the Prime Ministers, and on the advantage of their meeting annually, or at such longer intervals as may prove feasible. The principle established in 1918 of direct communication between Prime Ministers, and of the right of the Dominion Prime Ministers to nominate Cabinet Ministers to represent them in consultation with the Prime Minister of the United Kingdom (see p. lxvi above), was reaffirmed.


In the course of the discussions on Foreign Policy at the Prime Ministers' Conference of 1921, much time was devoted to the problems of the Western Pacific and Far East; whilst the discussions were proceeding, the President of the United States of America issued his invitation to a Conference to be held at Washington in the Autumn of 1921, at which these matters would be discussed, as well as the question of limitation of armaments. The British Empire Delegation at this Conference included representatives of Canada (Sir R. Borden), Australia (Senator Pearce), New Zealand (Sir J. Salmond) and India. Several important conventions were concluded at the






NOTE.--The representatives of the Union of South Africa were unable to accept this Resolution in view of the exceptional circumstances of the greater part of the Union. The representatives of India expressed the hope that, by negotiation between the Governments of India and of the Union of South Africa, some way could be found to reach a more satisfactory position.

Conference, including that for the limitation of Naval Armament, the Quadruple Pacific Treaty and the Nine-Power Treaty regarding China (see Cmd. 1627). The Dominions were also represented at the International Conference held in Genoa in the spring of 1922, and some sent representatives to the subsequent technical Conference held at the Hague.

In 1922, in pursuance of the Resolution passed at the 1921 Conference, an Act, entitled the Empire Settlement Act, was passed by the Parliament at Westminster empowering His Majesty's Government in the United Kingdom in Empire association with Dominion Governments or public or private Settlement Act, 1922. organisations either in the United Kingdom or overseas, to formulate and co-operate in carrying out agreed schemes for affording joint assistance to suitable persons in the United Kingdom to settle in the Oversea Dominions.

Legislation was enacted amending the British Nationality and Status of Aliens Act, 1914 (see p. lxii), in the direction of giving greater facilities for the retention of British citizenship by children born abroad of British parents.

Action in 1922 on Resolutions of 1921 Conference and of previous Conferences.

A Conference on the subject of an Empire Patent was held in June.

Legislation was passed at the end of the year to facilitate the importation of cattle from Canada into the United Kingdom.

Shortly after Mr. Bonar Law assumed office as Prime Minister in the autumn of 1922, enquiries were made of the Dominions and India as to the possibility of holding an Imperial Economic Conference in 1923 to study the question of co-operation in the development of the resources of the British Empire and the strengthening of economic relations between its constituent parts. It was ultimately decided to hold an Economic Conference and a meeting of the Imperial Conference concurrently. Both Conferences took place in London in October and November, 1923, the Irish Free State being represented for the first time.

The Prime Minister of the United Kingdom (Mr. Stanley Baldwin) presided at the Imperial Conference, and the Prime Ministers of Canada (Mr. Mackenzie King), the Commonwealth of Australia (Mr. Bruce), New Zealand (Mr. Massey), and the Union of South Africa (General Smuts), the President of the Executive Council of the Irish Free State (Mr. Cosgrave) and the Prime Minister of Newfoundland (Mr. Warren), attended the meetings, as well as other Ministers and representatives of India.

The United Kingdom, the Dominions, India and the Colonies and Protectorates were all represented at the meetings of the Imperial Economic Conference, over which the President of the Board of Trade (Sir Philip Lloyd-Graeme) presided.



The Imperial Conference gave detailed consideration to the Foreign Policy of the British Empire and reached a common understanding on the main heads of the policy to be pursued, subject to the approval of the Governments and Parliaments. The main conclusions, and extracts from the general Conference, statement made by the Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs, were (Cmd. 1987 and subsequently published. The question of the Naval, Air and Military Cmd. 1988.) Defence of the Empire was also considered and resolutions were passed placing on record the chief conclusions which had been reached Certain points in connection with the negotiation, signature and ratification of Treaties were discussed and a Resolution was adopted. Other matters considered included the Condominium in the New Hebrides, the status of High Commissioners, the publication of correspondence between the several Governments, the contribution of India to the

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