The Next Ten Years in British Social and Economic Policy

By G. D. H. Cole | Go to book overview

CHAPTER XIV
THE EMPIRE—FOREIGN AFFAIRS

This chapter limited to the purely economic aspects of imperial and foreign policy—The possibilities of developing Empire trade—And migration— Gains and losses of Empire—The exploitation of native labour—British and native capitalists—British policy in Africa—Impossibility of withdrawal from imperial commitments— Great Britain and the Dominions— Investment of capital within the Empire—Bulk purchase of imperial products—The case against tariff preference—Forms of preference without a tariff—Should the Dominions grant tariff preference?—Trade relations with the non-self-governing territories of the Empire—Case against planter-control—The Empire Marketing Board and its work— Need for its development—Desirability of pooling the world's economic research—Is 'Imperialism' the enemy?—Modern growth of Empires— Need for a change of policy designed to put native interests first—The problem of 'mandated' areas—The League of Nations in relation to nonself-governing peoples—Economic functions of the League—Disarmament—The International Labour Organisation—The International Economic Conference of 1927—The lowering of barriers to international trade—The growth of international capitalist combination prepares the way for international State control—Need for international action to raise the standard of life— Great Britain's interest in this—The Russian problem—Case for full recognition— China—Imperialism as a cause of war—The rights and duties of Britain as an imperial power—Why the British Empire should not be broken up.

IT is not my intention, in this book, to deal directly with questions of foreign or imperial policy. I am writing, not about the policy of the next ten years in all its aspects, but about some parts of it which are directly concerned with economic and social matters in a restricted sense. There are, however, certain points at which it is clearly impossible to deal with economic and social policy without some discussion of foreign affairs and imperial relations. Already, in dealing with the future of British overseas trade, we have had to discuss the plans of the 'Imperialists' for fostering economic self-sufficiency within the Empire.

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