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possible doubt upon that subject. If, of twelve years, we should not take either therefore, these things were true, as most the probable price of the funds in time of unquestionably they were, had he not peace, nor of war, but a medium price. better reason than ever for saying that Now, that medium price between war and the Bank was not only as firm, but firmer peace he would take at 75; and, rememthan almost any person apprehended? bering that we were bound to pay the Having no doubt upon that subject, he Bank the eleven millions at par at the exwould ask, whether he was not also jus-piration of their charter, we should find tified in making this agreement with the the calculations of the hon. gentleman Bank? The first question was, Whether it erroneous. The hon. gentleman said, that would produce gain or loss to the public? this cost the Bank nothing: very true, 2dly, Whether the thing were creditable but if we did not give this to the Bank, or not? Now, upon the latter question, we should give it to some other body of it was certainly not creditable in general, men: in short, his opinion was, that this to sell a reversion upon usurious profits was a reasonable bargain between the to the purchaser; but if the terms were public and the Bank. But the hon. genfair, and the sum was given before it na-tleman said, this could never have taken turally became due, it was not discredit-place if the Bank had not been restricted able to the seller to make such a bargain. Then, as to the terms, if any one would look at the subject properly, he would see that our policy was, to prevent the rapid accumulation of debt, or to check the progress of the interest of it. This was done by the present measure; for here were to be three millions brought into the public service without interest for a time. The question, then, was, Whether this sum should be taken now, or be left to a future period? Now, if we looked to a period of peace, certainly it was extremely difficult to say when we should arrive at that period; yet he might say that we could hardly expect to be concerned in any very extensive war six years hence; and then the 3 per cents being at par, the difference between making this bargain now, and making it then, would be 1,700,000l. This sum the public would lose by following the advice of the hon. gentleman. The profit to the Bank was about 400,000l. and not 671,000l. as stated by the hon. gentleman. This 400,000/. for 21 years was what the public granted to the Bank. Besides, if this was not granted to the Bank, it must have been granted to some other company, on the principle of the hon. gentleman himself. These points considered, he would ask, was this an improvident bargain on the part of the public? There was another point not taken notice of by the hon. gentleman; which was, that if we let the Bank charter expire, we must repay the Bank its eleven millions capital at par, for which at present we paid only 3 per cent. The hon. gentleman was sanguine as to the circumstances of the country, in which he had no disposition to quarrel with him; but if we looked at the period

from making payments in cash, and that this was owing to the great advances of the Bank to government. The present advance of the Bank to government was about eight millions; and when this came to be added, it would certainly amount to eleven millions; and the hon. gentleman considered this as an unprecedented thing. Now it did so happen, that the Bank was in advance to government eleven or twelve millions at a period so long ago as the time of sir Robert Walpole; therefore, there was nothing very extraordinary in this advance. As to what had been said on the subject of the undue influence arising from the connection between government and the Bank, he could not help regarding it as idle declamation. We were told, we should wait for a period until there should be no connection between government and the Bank? What harm was there in this connection? What was the injury likely to be done to the public credit, by the Bank advancing to government sums for the security of which the Bank had the protection of parliament? Where was the mischief that the Bank, deriving its profits through a thousand channels connected with the growing commerce of this country, should supply the great machine of state which put the public force in motion, to protect the inhabitants of a great and flourishing nation in the enjoyment of all the blessings they feel? Where was the harm that the Bank should employ part of its great capital to facilitate the circulation of exchequer bills, and to make loans on easy terms? Where was the harm that they should employ part of their wealth to aid the transaction of all public business?

Where was the harm that the Bank should contribute to the more economical, as well as the more easy management of public affairs, and to the real stability of government? In short, he saw nothing extraordinary in this connection between government and the Bank.

Mr. S. Thornton confessed, that the first overtures for the renewal of the Bank charter came from the governor and directors of the Bank, because they felt that such a renewal at such a period would prove of utility both to the Bank and to the country at large. A question had been set afloat about the establishment of another bank; meetings had been held for that purpose; pamphlets had been published in recommendation of such a measure, and motions had even been made in that House, respecting its necessity. It was therefore high time to propose the present measure, and to bring it to as early a decision as possible. He disclaimed, in his own name, and in that of the directors, being influenced by any political hostilities or predilections, and he was bold to assert, that there never was a greater proportion of specie in the Bank to their paper currency, than was to be found in it at the present moment. He thought it right that the Bank should make advances to government as far as their abilities would admit and prudence would justify, but he confessed that they would act a dishonourable part if they advanced a single pound note without being in possession of wherewith to make it good.

and contended that it should not be confounded with the stoppage of any private bank; it was not looked upon in that view by the public, but on the contrary, for on the very day the specie payments of the Bank had stopped, stocks rose 14 per cent.

The bill was then read a third time.

East India Budget.] March 25. The House having resolved itself into a committee of the whole House, on the papers relating to the affairs of the India Company,

Mr. Secretary Dundas said, that he would, as briefly as possible, submit to the consideration of the committee the statements which related to the affairs of the East India Company. The accounts went a year further back than he could have wished to have laid before the House, owing to the circumstance of the accounts from India last year not having arrived till some time subsequent to the end of the session of parliament. He should therefore have wished for some further delay in this business, as he was of opinion that accounts would soon arrive which would considerably elucidate many of the arti cles contained in the present statements: the reason, however, which had determined him to prefer the discharge of his duty at the present moment to that of following his inclination, was, that the accounts of the India Company were so very accurate and clear, that it would not be necessary for him to take up much of the time of the House. The purpose of his present course would be, to give merely the figures, with such casual explanations as might strike him as necessary in going over the several articles. Mr. Dundas then went through the following Abstract of Statements relative to the Affairs of the East-India Company, 1799.

BENGAL.

Mr. Manning expressed his indignation that any expression like that of "flimsy paper," should be applied to the current notes of the Bank of England. The advances of the Bank to government were as great at other times as at the present. As to the advantages supposed to be derived from the situation of bank director, they were more than counterbalanced by risks to which the Bank was exposed by REVENUES, No. 1.-Average 1795-6 forgeries, which of late years had amounted to considerable sums. The situation of bank director was therefore erroneously stated to be a lucrative one; whoever undertook it with that view was unfit for such a trust. Those who now charged themselves with that important duty could be influenced by no other motive than their desire to labour for, and promote CHARGES, No. 3.-Estimated for

the public utility.

Mr. Simeon justified the stoppage of the Bank upon reasons of sound policy,

to 1797-8

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................5,726,947

Less than last year

51,730 5,743,847 5,782,741

No. 3. Estimated for 1797-8 Actual amount

1797-8..

More than estimate 38,894

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More than estimate 137,669 | REVENUES, No. 9.-Estimated for

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1797-8.

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And the nett revenue of 1797-8 is 1,751,081 CHARGES, No. 9.-Estimated for

1797-8...

ESTIMATES, 1798-9.

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More than estimate

3,952,847

95,871

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Bombay.... 47,858

Nett deficiency of the territorial re

venues....

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Deducted from amount on sales of imports per No. 15

603,926

194,700

582,833

The remainder 388,133 is the amount applicable to purchase of investments, payment of commercial charges.

&c.

GENERAL VIEW.

RESULT OF ESTIMATES 1798-9, COLLECTIVELY,
REVENUES-Bengal 6,259,600

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Madras
Bombay..

2,004,993
346,110

CHARGES

Bengal
Madras
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3,952,847
2,857,519
996,699

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8,610,703

7,807,065

803,638

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Nett improvement 1,108,527

The results arising from the investigation of the accounts, naturally suggest the propriety of further remarks. From the origin of the establishment of the present system of control over the affairs of the East-India company, but particularly since the arrangement in 1793 (the commencement of the present charter), my earnest endeavours have been exerted, that the end designed should be fully accomplished. Every variation from the estimate then formed, which was considered the basis of the financial calculations, has been distinctly attended to; the subsequent estimates, framed agreeably to the circumstances of the times, have been minutely examined, and their out-turn, either as it respected revenue or charge, closely investigated, and stated to the committee. Upon the present occasion,

Deduct, supplies to Bencoolen, &c. 117,160 it has been deemed requisite to go into

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more extensive explanations in the detail of the examination, because it is the first in which a deficit has appeared in the resources of India to answer the demands, and because the result in the home concern has been so much more favourable than any expectation which could have been entertained. These explanations might, perhaps, be sufficient to account for the differences between the estimates and the actual accounts of the year in question; but it appears needful that the attention of the committee should be directed to a more general view of the subject, lest any alarm should arise in consequence of the deficiency abroad, and lest the confidence in the stability of the resources there (which may be justly entertained) should be shaken.

The estimate of 1793, now adverted to, was framed on the most accurate calculations prescribed by the experience of past years. That the prospects might not be over-rated, the resources, though evidently in a state of improvement, were taken on a moderate scale. This is proved by the issue. Their produce has more than justified the expectations; and although fluctuations on so immense a revenue must naturally be expected, the estimate has been exceeded in no less a sum than a million sterling on the average: and it is satisfactory to observe, that not

withstanding some disappointments have Occasionally happened in the realization of the company's own immediate resources, nothing has occurred to raise any doubt of their general stability and permanence. The subsidies from the princes in alliance with the company, for the military assistance rendered them, have received a considerable addition; and it is expected that the receipts on that account will, in the The view of the political situation of year 1798-9, exceed the sum first stated the company, presents a source of the in no less an amount than 560,000l. highest satisfaction. The necessity of From what has been now observed, it the most vigorous and decisive measures must be concluded, that the immense is completely self-evident; and if the predifference has entirely arisen from the servation of the British possessions, entire increase of the charges. It nevertheless and undiminished, had been alone accomappears, that the estimate, in this respect plished, a truly valuable end would have was framed with an equal degree of cau- been answered; but when the most santion. The increase has been occasioned guine expectations have been exceeded, by circumstances which could not pos- and the power and influence of this counsibly be foreseen: it has been progressive; try in the East have been carried to an and the various additions have been annu- extent, and established on a footing, flatally explained to the committee as they tering to its pride, and conducive to its arose. On the review it will be found, general interests, every regret at the imthat a part may be looked upon to be mense expenses incurred will vanish, and permanent; as that occasioned by the the attention will only be directed to the regulations for the administration of jus- ample remuneration which will hereafter tice, that incurred by the military regu- be found. The pursuit and attainment lations in 1796, with the increased pay to of these great objects naturally affected the Europeans, in conformity with the the whole financial system abroad, in a same measure in England; also the addi- degree apparently injurious to the comtion to the army, in consequence of the mercial interests. A very considerable subsidiary treaties; but a very material part part of the sum usually appropriated to of the increased expense may be stated to the purposes of commerce became abbe temporary and contingent, and to have sorbed; so that the continuance of the arisen from the necessity of various expe- investments at their accustomed amount, ditions, and of warlike preparations, of and much more the extension, might cerwhich it will not be practicable to ascertainly be considered a question rather tain the whole charge incurred till accounts problematical, from the difficulty of proof a later date shall be received. It is viding funds increasing with the addithen intended more fully to illustrate the tional amount required; and specially as policy of the measures adopted from time those funds could only be raised on loans, to time; likewise the important and bene- at expensive rates of interest, or on bills ficial consequences which may be ulti- at an unfavourable exchange. The effect mately expected from the successful issue of the former has been shown in the inof the late military operations.-A part creased debt abroad, and the inconveof the additional disbursement may be nience is felt in the great demand for inattributed to the commerce; the debts terest: but at the periods in question, no having been increased from the measure inconvenience of this description could be of carrying the investments to the utmost put in competition with the far greater extent possible, from which the annual evils which must have arisen from the interest was much greater. The remarks interruption of the manufactures on the Dow offered arise from the general view of one hand, or with the advantages which, the whole concern, and lead to the most on every commercial principle might be satisfactory inferences. The reckoned upon, on the other. In both have certainly been immense; but, under respects, the end has been fully answered; ery circumstance of the war, the reve- the industry of the natives has had full Bes have increased, and the trade has scope, and the produce of it has met a been advanced, to an amount before un-ready and profitable market. The treaknown. Great advantages have been sury at home has been replenished, and

already derived; more may be expected. The major part of the expense incurred can only be esteemed a temporary sacrifice to obtain a substantial and permanent benefit. My opinions to this effect have formerly been given; and I am much gratified, that in whatever way the subject is considered, they appear to be fully warranted in the result.

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VOL. XXXV.]

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