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Consular Service

Volume 237: debated on Monday 24 March 1930

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50.

asked the Secretary to the Overseas Trade Department what is the total number of British Consular officers, including honorary officers, serving abroad; how many of these are unpaid; and whether it is proposed to increase the number of paid Consular officers?

There are at present 897 British Consular officers. Of these 376 are salaried officers. The remaining 521 are unsalaried, including 16 acting officers. As regards the last part of the question, it is not at present contemplated to increase the number except in regard to the Soviet Union.

Is the hon. Gentleman aware that many of these unsalaried officers are in very important commercial posts? Is the matter receiving his continued attention?

I am aware of what the hon. and gallant Gentleman bas said, but I do not understand in what way he wants me to act.

The hon. Gentleman might increase the number of State officers, from whom naturally more service can be expected.