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The Capital, and Trade with Sydney.

Passing from the consideration of the principal “things to be desired” in connection with the site for the Capital City, which must be determined by arguments originating in the necessities of the Commonwealth at large, we come to the discussion of points which


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more particularly affect New South Wales in this question of choice of a Federal territory. It is conceivable that a spot may suggest itself as a suitable site regarded solely from the point of view of the Commonwealth, the selection of which might yet radically injure the mother province. New South Wales makes a sacrifice of territory in order to endow the Federal Government with a home, and it is too much to ask that in addition, her trade and social interests shall suffer. With the Capital on the border of New South Wales and Victoria the natural source of trade supplies for its population would not be Sydney, but Melbourne. At Bombala, it would still be Melbourne for many years, with the additional certainty that a new port would be created at Twofold Bay before long, to serve the Capital, but to add to the provincial expenditure of New South Wales, while diverting trade from Sydney. For it must be perceived that while the trade of the Capital, if situated at Bombala, which would pass through Twofold Bay, would not in any sense be monopolised by New South Wales, it must inevitably follow that the port would have to be improved at the cost exclusively of this province. With the Capital at Bathurst, there is no possibility of similar direct or indirect loss being inflicted on Sydney. Sydney must ever be the importing and supplying port, not alone for Bathurst, but for the greater portion of the Western Division that cannot have its wants met by the river trade. The erection of the Capital in the West, and its organisation with all its machinery of political, administrative and industrial life, would mean a large certain addition to Sydney trade, and it is not by any means certain that were the Capital situated elsewhere than in the West, the metropolis of this province would secure an equal increment to its volume of business. With the settlement of the Capital at Bathurst there would be a stimulus to the enterprise and industry of the whole West. The Western Division, indeed, would prove a contributing area to the commerce of the Capital—would form, so to speak, “its back country.” No place to the southward of Sydney has a like proximity to an extent of country, the trade of which it could ensure should contribute to the prosperity of Sydney as a port and distributing centre. This is an argument that must appeal to Sydney merchants and importers. The Capital in the West will stimulate settlement, consumption, and trade, almost the whole volume of increased business adding to Sydney's profit and importance; the Capital in the South would lead, in the case of Albury and Bombala, to the diversion of trade from New South Wales, and if it be at Goulburn, there is behind that town no vast body of settlers and consumers, commanding an enormous area of land in course of settlement to be stimulated to increased activity and production. IN THE DEVELOPMENT OF THE WEST LIES THE KEY TO THE FUTURE PROSPERITY OF THE MOTHER PROVINCE.




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