7 JULY 1894, Page 11

The Interoolonial Conference at Ottawa has spent most of the

week in discussing the question of the Pacific cable. All the delegates were in theory for the cable, but in practice there seems to have been a strong feeling against the Conference committing itself to any special scheme. It is generally believed, says a Reuter's telegram, that the Con- ference " will endorse the project in principle while leaving • the construction of the line to private enterprise." That is a sound, if not very Sensational, conclusion. It is also stated that the motion submitted by Sir Henry Wrixon (Victoria) in favour of the Colonies being given full power to enter into Preferential trade arrangements with Great Britain, without foreign Powers participating .therein, is sure to be adopted unanimously, y This is a very dangerous proposal, and unless most carefully treated by the Colonial Office may indirectly do a great injury to English trade. If carried out, it might cause the Continental Powers to revise their tariffs in an anti-English sense. By all means let us have Free-trade within the Empire, but let us get it by a Free-trade road, and not by a Protectionist one.