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Wide Field For Merchants

;. Suggestions as to how Auckland merchants might secure a large trade with Samoa were contained in a letter read at a meeting of the Auckland Chamber of Commerce one afternoon last

•week. A copy of the communi- ; cation had been sent to the Hon. James Allen, Minister of Defence who requested that he should be furnished with the reply sent by the Chamber. The writer,. Sergeant W. H. Mulcahy, who is attached to the relief force, and

has had nearly 12 months residence in Apia, Samoa, said he was surprised, during that period, at the considerable number of large schooners calling for cargoes, three and sometimes four being in the harbour at one time. All brought cargoes, and the aggregate of goods supplied from Anierica and Australia was large. Practically every kind of merchandise was imported . from America, cotton goods largely, but hardware, kerosene, benzine, oil stoves, ice chests, oil engines, motor cars, canned fruits, etc., represented extensive lines. r ßuilding timber, iron, • and a ! large quantity of groceries, flour; land provisions and fancy goods

went to Samoa from Sydney. Apathy of Business Men; "The apathy of New Zealand firms to' the potentialities of Samoa," continued the writer, "can only arise from a complete lack of knowledge of the island and its large native population, which is about 40,000. There are between twenty and thirty large general stores carrying fairly large stocks, many having branch stores at from three to six different places. There is nrj question but that the native people have the handling of a large amount of money for copra, cocoa, kapok, etc., produced at no cost, but valued at £75,000 per, annum."

The Hon. James Allen's suggestion that a representative should be sent to Samoa by New Zealand merchants at a divided cost seemed to the writer, who is a business man, difficult of realisation, owing to the probability of a clashing of interests where orders were concerned, iln any case, he said, New'Zealand;should-, not hesitate to assert herself assoon as possible, whether?by individual or combined effoiit. Two industries which were capable of great expansion were, poultryraising and pig-breeding. \ There were great numbers of pigs and poultry in Somoa, but ignorance of correct methods of raising was responsible for poor results. Eggs were almost unobtainable at the market price of 2s 6d to.4s per dozen, and there was a large put

unsatisfied demand for them. Bee-keeping should also prove very profitable, as the whole island was an immense garden. The German Trader.

Sergeant Mulcahy suggested that an exhibition should be held and an invitation extended to the chiefs to attend. The writer urged the necessity of presenting a strong front to the traders, the majority of whom were German or half-caste Samoan, only a very small percentage being British.

Mr E. C. Browne said he understood that many firms were doing their utmost' to secure the Samoan and Island trade generally, but they had lost so many responsible men owing" to the war that they could not do all they would like to do in this connection, i

The chairman, Mr E. Anderson, said he understood Colnoel G. W. S. Patterson was requested by the Government to make a report as to the possibilities of .trade between New Zealand and Samoa. The speaker added'that the Government should be requested to furnish the Chamber with a copy of the I'eport.

It was decided to thank Sergeant Mulcahy for his letter, and the whole matter was referred to a sub-committee to consider and report. It was also decided to ask the Government for a copy of Colonel Patterson's report, if it was available.

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Bibliographic details

TRADE WITH SAMOA., Akaroa Mail and Banks Peninsula Advertiser, Volume LXXV, Issue 3529, 21 March 1916

Word Count

TRADE WITH SAMOA. Akaroa Mail and Banks Peninsula Advertiser, Volume LXXV, Issue 3529, 21 March 1916

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