Page:Statesman's Year-Book 1899 American Edition.djvu/1061

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FINANCE — PRODUCTION AND INDUSTRY 705

Finance.

Nearly half of the revenue is from customs, and over one-third from taxes on spirits, tobacco, &c. ; while seven-tenths of the expenditure is for public debt, instruction, and war.

The revenue and expenditure for five years (estimates for 1898) are given as follows (currency): —

1894

1895

1896

1897

1898

Revenue Expenditure .

dollars 11,851,026 13,577,034

dollars 14,491,667 15,515,081

dollars 15,150,741 17,437,452

dollars 12,479,741

dollars 11,565,000

Of the u-evenue for 1898, 3,926,000 dollars is from customs, 2,226,000 dollars from exchange, additional duties, &c. ; 3,224,000 dollars from liquors. Of the total estimated revenue for 1898, 4,636,000 dollars Avas assigned to special purj»oses (debt charges, railways, &c. ), leaving only 6,929,000 dollars for administration.

In 1898 (according to the report of the Council of the Corporation of Foreign Bondholders) the outstanding amount of the 4 per cent. External Debt oi 1895 was £1,482,800. The national balance sheet for the year ending December 31, 1897, showed assets (cash, property, railways, &c.) amounting to 17,383,513 dollars currency, and liabilities (including External Debt, 18,443,600 dollars) amounting to 40,185,424 dollars, or (at 150 per cent.) 3,215,000Z.

Defence.

The array of Guatemala, the cost of which is about one-tenth of the total public expenditure, consists (1896) of about 7,000 officers and men in regular service. The effective army consists of 56,900 men from 18 to 30 years of age ; the reserve has 30,000 men from 30 to 50 years of age.

Production and Industry.

By the National Land Law of 1894, the State lands (except those on the frontiers and the sea-shore) were divided into lots for sale, the maximum allotment permitted to one person being 15 caballarias (or about 1,687 acres). The price varies from 250 dollars per caballaria (112^ acres) to 400 or 500 dollars, including costs of surve}^ titles, &c. IJncultivated lands may be granted gratuitously to immigrants or to immigrant companies, to municipalities, villages and schools, or as assistance towards road-making.

The soil in general is exceedingly fertile. The most important crop is coffee, of which, in 1896, the exports reached 687,726 quintals; in 1897, 824,756 quintals. The export duty on cofl'ee was reduced in 1898 from li dollar gold to 1 dollar silver. About 2,500 acres are devoted to tobacco culture, yielding about 9,900 quintals. Bananas are produced in large quantities ; maize and cocoa are also grown. On the high plateaux there is good pasture for cattle, the number of which in 1895 was about 500,000. The number of horses in the Republic is put at 62,000, and of mules at 42,000. Slice]) are raised in considerable numbers, but poor and small. Pigs of fair quality are reared.

Gold, silver, lead, tin, copper, sulphur, .salt, and other minerals exist, but are little worked. In 1897 mining for gold was carried on at the Motagna River, where about 10,000/. had been spent on machinery, dwellings, kc. ; for silver in the departments of Santa Rosa and Chiquimula ; and for salt in the departments of Alta Vera Paz and Santa Rosa. The precious

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