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NEW DUTIES AT THE SOUND AND THE TWO BELTS-Continued.
With regard to the terms used in the preceding schedule, it in understood that the "shippound," when relating to commodities from Russia and Sweden, is 400 pounds, and from all other countries, 300 pounds weight; a "dicker" is ten pieces, and a "shock" sixty pieces.
KINGDOM OF PORTUGAL.
OFFICIAL CONSULAR STATEMENT
WITH REGARD TO
ARTICLES PAYING ADDITIONAL DUTY; CUSTOM-HOUSE TARES; FOREIGN AND NATIONAL VESSELS ENTERING OPORTO DURING THE YEAR 1840; STATEMENT OF WINE SHIPPED FROM OPORTO, 1838, 1839, 1840, AND 1841; PORT CHARGES, CURRENCY, WEIGHTS, AND MEASURES.
The following communication, received at the Department of State, in answer to the circular of November, 1841, came to hand at too late a date to imbody its material parts in the preceding report, and is therefore inserted as follows:
TARIFF OF PORTUGAL.
OPORTO, February 8, 1842.
Since the year 1837, during the ministry of the Hon. Mansel Passos, the old and multifarious revenue' laws and regulations of the Kingdom of Portugal have been superseded by a regular and uniform tariff of import and export duties, levied on all goods according to their value. The old duties, termed dizenia and siza, the donativo, consulado, fragata, and comboy duties, have thus been abolished, and substituted by the tariff duties, with an addition of three per cent. on the whole amount of said duties, called emolumentos, for the salary of the custom-house officers.
The system of ad valorem duties having been found deficient, on account of the frequent frauds practised by importing merchants, through fictitious invoices and undervaluations of goods, and many alterations having been deemed necessary to secure and increase the public revenue, a new tariff has been established by the law of the 11th of March, 1841, which was put in force on the 15th of August; and by another law dated, 9th of October, 1841, it suffered very considerable alterations, principally in regard to woollens, iron, steel, wines, bobbinets, glass, &c., for the details of which I must refer you to the tariff itself, which I deemed it my duty to send herewith.
By the said law of the 9th of October, not only the duties of a great many articles have been increased, but an, additional duty has also been imposed on some goods, as by the annexed table, (marked A.) The extra duty of three per cent., called emolumentos, has also by the same law been raised to six per cent. on the amount of the principal duties, the additional duties not being included. The table marked B contains the tares allowed by law. During the patriotic administration of the Hon. Mansel Passos, in 1837, the General Cortes had passed a law by which a deduction of fifteen per cent. ou all duties was allowed for all merchandise imported in national bottoms. This wise measure had given a great impulse to the national shipping enterprise, and greatly increased the number of Portuguese patents. By the stipulations of the treaty of the 26th of August, 1840, our flag having been equalised to the Portuguese vessels, the direct importations from the United States in American vessels were entitled to the same deduction on the duties. Some nations, however, and especially England, having counteracted against this measure, by imposing differential duties on all goods imported in Portuguese vessels, and it having been ascertained that the deduction of fifteen per cent. deprived the public treasury of about $300,000 annually, the Government came to the determination, in the present wretched state of the Portuguese finances, to abolish the differential duties, and to equalise in this respect all foreign vessels with the national flag. This law was published on the 15th of November ult., and commenced to be in force on the 15th of January last.
Goods warehoused in to the custom-house, either for consumption or for
exportation, pay, besides the export duties, a storage duty, after having been deposited for one year, of twenty reis a month, per quintal, on all dry goods, and sixteen reis per almude on liquids. Raw cotton, sugar, saltpetre, tobacco, coffee, cinnamon, pimento, tea, cocoa, and hides, are excepted, and pay storage dues only after having been deposited for two years.. Combustible goods cannot be deposited into the public store, but are warehoused at the owner's expense in private stores, under the key of the custom-house.
All grain and bread-stuff's, including potatoes, are of prohibited importation, and not admitted to warehouseing, except grain coming from Spain along the Douro, which can be deposited in public stores in Oporto, by the late convention between Spain and Portugal for the free navigation of the Douro. Rice and barley can be imported, paying duties according to the tariff.
Foreign goods, already despatched at the custom-house, for internal consumption, can be re-exported free of export duty, with the exception of those articles which pay a higher duty for the exportation than for the importation, which must pay the full export duty, besides the import duty already paid.
All goods the growth and production of China and of East India, as pepper, tea, drugs, &c., can only be imported in Portuguese vessels.
Soap and tobacco, being a royal monopoly, are not even admitted to warehouseing; the manufactured tobacco is admitted only at the customhouse of Lisbon.
The importers of goods are obliged to enter them at the custom-house within twelve days after the arrival of the vessel in a Portuguese port, otherwise they are liable to the payment of an extra duty of one per cent.,. and after six months to the loss of the goods.
Port wine, when exported from Oporto to another port in Europe, pays an export duty of 12 miireis per pipe, and only 100 reis per pipe if it is destined for any other port out of Europe.
The importations, in Oporto, of goods the growth and production of the United States, were valued
In 1838, to 14,723 102 reis; duties paid, 1,429||000 reis;
In 1839, to 50,100 000 reis; duties paid, 2,400 000 reis ;
In 1840, to 80,000||000 reis; duties paid, 4,200||000 reis.
The principal importations were staves, timber, rice, and naval stores. The treaty of Methuen of 1704, and the still more disgraceful stipulations of 1810, having thrown all the resources of Portugal into the handsof English monopolizers, it is no wonder if, even after such treaties have ceased to be in force, almost all the importing trade is carried on by British merchants, and under the Britishh flag.
From 1815 to the year 1827 the importations from England, in Portugal, averaged annually to £447,283. Two hundred English vessels are constantly employed in bringing codfish from Newfoundland to Portugal; 4,393,913 quintals have been imported in the period running from 1796 to 1816, and 5,941,615 quintals from 1816 to 1836, making an aggregate of 10,039,933 quintals of codfish imported into Portugal in English vessels during the last forty years. The annexed table (marked C) shows all foreign and national vessels entered in this port in 1840.
The table marked D contains all the exportations of port wine for the last four years.