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The Pamphlet Collection of Sir Robert Stout: Volume 55

The Mail Arrangements

The Mail Arrangements.

I wish to say a few words upon the mail service. (Hear, hear.) I am of opinion that nothing that has occurred in New Zealand for years past has been of greater benefit to it than the fact that there are now direct steamers between Great Britain and New Zealand. (A Voice : "Well done, Macandrew.") When we consider that those steamers running are not monthly, but fortnightly, bringing people out from Great Britain, and taking us home with a rapidity which not many years ago would have been considered fabulous, I am sure that you will agree that they are a vast benefit. As to the San Francisco service, I may say I am endeavouring to negotiate in such a manner as will enable me to lay before Parliament, for its approval, a proposal that when the present contract runs out, as it will in a very few months, that there shall be a new service to San Francisco, and that that service should have its terminus at Auckland. (Cheers.) And I may say this, that instead of its requiring three boats, two fast boats would he sufficient to run the service between San Francisco and Auckland in about 16 days. I am not without hope that we will be able to lay before Parliament proposals in that direction which would be accepted by the Legislature, and give you the means of communicating with San Francisco in about 16 days, or with Great Britain in very little over 30 days. (Cheers.) We are also, I may say, about calling for tenders—the advertisements will appear in a day or two—for a service to the Inlands—to the groups of islands included in the Tonga, Samoa, and Tahitian groups. I have reason to believe, if that service is established, it will be the moans of bringing a large amount of trade and commerce to the colony. (Cheers.)