21 APRIL 1933, Page 3

Shipping Subsidies The ease against shipping subsidies is fully substan-

tiated in the report of a deputation from the Baltic Conference to the Chamber of Shipping. Both these important bodies of shipowners agreed that Government subsidies had encouraged owners to build ships that were not needed and to keep in commission old ships that were uneconomical to run and should be scrapped. The result is that the world's merchant shipping is half as large again AS before the War, while the world's sea-borne trade is vastly diminished and continues to decline. Therefore all shipowners arc suffering, awl thousands of officers and men arc unemployed. The Baltic Conference advocates an international agreement to break up useless ships, but the Chamber of Shipping replies that shipowners call do little while Governments pour out subsidies for new ships. It may be added that some of the big tramp steamers laid up in our East Coast estuaries have lately been sold to Greeks fin• less than a tenth of their cost. Such vessels, bought cheaply and worked cheaply, will intensify the compe- tition in the trade just as much as Government subsidies do.