Page:Narrative of an Official Visit to Guatemala.djvu/511

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491
SKETCH OF GUATEMALA

are held in Europe. British goods are sold, here, very cheap, not, perhaps, all charges included of freight, commission, duties, &c. above thirty per cent, higher than they can be purchased at the respectable retail shops in London. The fall in their prices as compared with those at which they sold before the ports were opened, or when the Spaniards had the monopoly, is excessive: they may, in most cases, be bought for less than one tenth of the former price. This advantage has been taken from the Spanish monopolist and given to the free trader as well as to the people of the country, who consume more European manufactures in one year than they probably did, before the revolution, in a century.

Alluding to the estimate which I made in 1825, it would appear that the value of goods exported from Great Britain to the new republics might be then taken at about ten millions sterling per annum: The amount at present, in 1829, is about twelve millions.