as soon as the work of reclaiming. By an excellent road, which is in course of construction, this new harbour will soon be linked up with the Belgian road to Bouchoute. The distance by this new road to the village is equal to that which separated it from the old wharf. The new harbour will be finished this summer. When they found that it was impossible to preserve the old harbour until the new one was finished, the Dutch authorities stipulated, when granting the contract for the work, that the contractor was not to hinder the communication between vessels stationed on the flats or in the fairway and the banks. He receives directions from the authorities ensuring facilities for the loading and discharging of the boats.
Means for towing the boats as far as the Isabella Lock and for unloading them are already in existence. The Bouchoute fishermen will soon be in more favourable conditions than ever before. They will have a good harbour with mooring-posts, walls and quays and it will then for the first time be possible to speak with truth of a Bouchoute harbour. Whereas hitherto the fishermen also used Philippine on Dutch territory, they will in future have a harbour entirely to themselves.
Let it be borne in mind that these improvements, which serve Belgian interests only, have been entirely carried out at the expense of Holland, though no convention binds her in this respect. Belgium contributes nothing.
It is the same with the drainage-works by way of the Isabella Lock, undertaken during the war by the Dutch government in accordance with existing projects previously agreed upon with Belgium. In carrying out these works, which were undertaken partly to provide work, partly to improve the drainage on Belgian territory, the reclaiming by means of dykes, which would have encouraged the accretion of fertile alluvium, has been abandoned.