Obrazy na stronie
PDF
ePub

try rapidly fell off. The quantity of sugar consumed in the United King- : dom for twenty years, was*From 1804 to 1813 ...... Cwts. 29,898,516

27,078,857

1814 to 1823

[blocks in formation]

a

Thus with an augmented population-in a time of peace—a great reduction in the cost of production, freight, &c., there was in ten years a diminution in the consumption of sugar to the extent of upwards of 300,000,000 lbs. weight!

Even in Great Britain alone, independent of Ireland, the result has been most disastrous to the commerce of the country and the health of the people: the consumption was, per head, in

[blocks in formation]

333 oz.

393 oz.

440 oz.

429 oz. Decrease on the two latter periods 143 oz. Had it not been for the reduction of the duty in 1830, the decrcase would have been much more than in now stands at. The consumption of sugar in the United Kingdom for the

Year 1810 was Cwts. 3,769,565
1832

................... 3,655,000

[blocks in formation]

The consumption of the distilleries is included, it is true, in the year 1810, and we cannot accurately ascertain the amount;t but admitting the distilleries to have consumed a large quantity, we find that in 1808 (not a year including distillery sugars) the consumption of Great Britain was Cwts. 2,842,813, while so late as 1825, it was no more than Cwts. 2,655,959. Nor has the revenue derived by the state been more fortunate than the commerce of the country; for sixteen years, the duty derived from the sugar in Great Britain was,From 1807 to 1814 £27,723,224

26,648,478

1815 to 1822

Decrease £1,074,7518 The rate of tax, levied on British plantation sugar during these comparative periods, was not materially different. But it must not be denied, that another legislative enactment, besides the amount of duty levied, has materially contributed to check the trade of the nation, the comforts of the people, and the revenue of the state, and that is the monopoly of the home-market given to the West-India colonies, where the manufacture of sugar in the old islands is yearly decreasing, the cultivation of the cane being an

* The sugar used in the distilleries, during the years 1809-10-11-12-13 and 14, are included in these years. + Probably 1,000,000 cwts.—Ep.

* But in 1826, it was 3,255,075.-ED. $ This decrease may be converted into an increase by adopting a comparison of other years, E. gr. :

From 1809 to 1816 ... ... £24,518,809

1817 to 1824 ........ 28,770,241

Increase ......

£2,251,432

EDITOR.

exhausting crop, which requires either a virgin soil for its prolific growth, or a constant state of expensive manuring, which at last utterly impoverishes the over-stimulated earth. In Jamaica and the old British West-India Islands, there is no virgin soil, and the cost of manuring, in order to produce the cane, is very great: an estate in Jamaica, which will produce 200 hogsheads of sugar, requires for the production of manure 500 acres of Guinea grass, (the cost of establishing which is £12. per acre, or £6,000), and 200 head of cattle, valued at £5,000. As may be expected, the quantity of sugar which we receive from Jamaica is progressively decreasing

Sugar Imported from Jamaica.
In 1817, 1818 and 1819 Cwts. 4,984,925

1829, 1830 and 1831 ................ 4,161,633 Exhibiting a decrease on three years of upwards of 800,000 owts., and this notwithstanding a reduction of the duty levied in England.

St. Vincent, ceded to Great Britain in 1763, containing 84,286 acres of a rich mould of black clay and sand, exceedingly fertile, and with twentytwo rivers capable of turning sugar-mills, produced of sugar

In 1802 ......... Ibs. 28,978,462
1830

27,913,927 Being a decrease of 1,064,535 lbs. The only consecutive returns of the island before me, are from 1802 to 1820, and the quantity produced in any of those years was greater than in 1830. This was not owing to decrease of population, for the number of slaves were—

In 1802

No. 17,484

23,848 Notwithstanding, indeed, some new sugar plantations were obtained at the close of the war, (Demerara and Berbice, for instance), the quantity of sugar imported from the British West-Indies into England, scarcely underwent any increase, while the price was kept up to the greatest height by the merchant and planter, on account of the monopoly possessed of the homemarket; even with the aid of so much fresh and fertile land, the supply has considerably diminished, while the manufacture of all other countries has increased, as will be seen by the following table.

Sugar produced in different countries in 1314 and in 1830.

1830

[merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][ocr errors]

Here we observe a remarkable decrease in the old colonies of England, Holland, and Denmark, while the very reverse has taken place in every part of the globe where sugar is produced ; even in the small island of Mauritius, with an area of 1,000 square miles and a population of 104,000, the increase has been 24,000 tons in one year compared with another : the result of lowering the duty in England on Mauritius sugar has been exceedingly remarkable; the reduction commenced in 1825, and the following increased importations into Great Britain alone, have since taken place :

[blocks in formation]

Tons 4,630 10,220 14,580 24,266 25,804 26,361 That is, an increase of nearly 22,000 tons in little more than five years !

The following table of importations into Great Britain will yet more clearly shew the decrease in the West-Indies.

Importation of Sugar into Great Britain.

[merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][ocr errors][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small]

on the

[ocr errors]

Thus, it will be seen, that the decrease on West-India sugar, and « bastards" made from their molasses, was

In 1829 as compared with 1828 Tons 14,024
In 1830 compared with 1829 ................ 18,220

Making a Total of ...... Tons 32,244

In fact, in 1817, the quantity of sugar imported into Great Britain from the West-India islands was greater than it has been in any year since; thus the nation had not only to pay a monopoly price, but they were also stinted in supply to an enormous extent, I wlule sugar grown in our East-India possessions, where we have forced on the natives our steam-wrought manufactures almost duty free, has been virtually excluded from the British markets : Bengal white sugar having a duty of 118 per cent. charged on it,-ditto middling, 128 per cent., and ditto low and browon, 152 per cent !

• Cook's (the Mincing Lane broker's) tract states the Mauritius sugаr of this year at 23,740 tons. The discrepancy, indeed, in various returns relative to sugar is very great.

Decrease on two latter years 23,621, and on bastards 16,160 tons. # From 1826 to 1833, the fall in price (exclusive of the duty) of Jamaica brown sugar was 26 per cent., while in Bengal common sugars, during the same period, it was 33 per cent.

Justly, indeed, do the Hindoos complain, in the petition presented to Parliament in June 1832, by Mr. Cutlar Fergusson (a petition that might as well have never been sent from Bengal, for the attention it has received), that

“ Every encouragement is held out to the exportation from England to India, of the growth and produce of foreign as well as English industry, while many thousands of the natives, who a short time ago derived a livelihood from the growth of cotton and the manufacture of cotton goods, are without bread, in consequence of the facilities afforded to the produce of America and to the manufacturing industry of England; but sugar, to the production of which the lands of the petitioners might be turned, is loaded with such heavy duties in England, as effectually to shut the market against the industry of the East-Indians, when turned to this particular commodity.

It is earnestly to be hoped that the prayer of this petition will now be attended to; every village in India has its patch of sugar-cane, and it wants only the opening of the English markets to benefit to an incalculable extent Great Britain as well as Hindostan, for the continued and progressive impoverishment of the latter is a serious detriment to the former.

The quantity of sugar consumed in the United Kingdom, averaged so high as 4,000,000 cwts., would for a population of 24,000,000 (leaving aside 1,000,000 for young infants, many of whom, however, also consume sugar) give only 18 lbs. a year, or 5 oz. a week, for each individual; now, it is well known, that a child of one year old would consume more than 5 oz. a week; that the workhouse-allowance is 34 lbs. a year, and the lowest domestic servant, 1 lb. a week or 52 lbs. a year. We might, therefore, fairly conclude that, if the duties on all our colonial sugars were reduced and placed on a level, the consumption and revenue would be thus increased :

Consumption.
West-India Plantation Sugar ............ Cwts. 4,000,000
Tax at £1. (uow £1. 43.) per cwt.

£4,000,000
Mauritius Sugar

500,000 Tax at £1. (now £1. 45.) per cwt.

500,000 East-India Possessions Sugar

2,000,000 Tax at £1. (now £1. 12s.) per cwt.

2,000,000 Foreign Sugar

500,000 Tax at £2. (now £3. 3s.) per cwt.

1,000,000 Totals ...... Cwts. 7,000,000 £7,500,000

a

[ocr errors]

Revenue.

.......

Here we observe that, even at the moderate rate of consumption of 32 lbs. a year, or only 9 oz. per week, of sugar for each individual, the revenue would be augmented by £2,500,000, and the conimerce, health, and comfort of the empire wonderfully increased.

There can even be no doubt, that if the duty were reduced to 12s. on West-India and to 16s. on East-India sugars, similar favourable resulls would ensue; for a few years (say two or three) the revenue would suffer, but a reduction and equalization to 20s. would instantly increase the revenue, while a prospect of eventual further diminution would

prepare

the way

for greater national benefits. Unless justice be done to the produce of British India, the late failures (amounting to £15,000,000) will be only the commencement of further ruin ; but let it be remembered, that England taxes

British India upwards of £20,000,000 a year, while the whole of the taxes levied in the West-Indies are little more than half a million, and in the former country we have a population of 100,000,000 British subjects, ready to purchase our goods to an illimitable extent, if we will receive their produce in return. If we would expect to derive advantage from the possession of Hindostan, it must not be by squeezing the uttermost farthing from her in the way of tribute; a perseverance in our past policy of one-sided freetrade will render the separation of the two countries mutually advantageous.

a

TRANSLATION FROM HAFIZ,

GHUZUL IN

حجاب چهره حان

The radiant veil, my spirit wears,

The body's grosser shades control;
Then welcome be the hour, that bears

From earthly gloom my glorious soul.
But drooping, dark, and lorn, it lies,

Pent like some winged warbler here,
And pines, as bird of Paradise,

To soar to yon unclouded sphere.
For dimly shines life's present state,

And dim the past's receding scene,
While all I know, I know too late :-

How vain for me that past hath been !
Why trace I not, on ample wing,

Yon Empyrean's pure profound ?
Why fixed to earth and languishing,

Within a frame terrestrial bound ?
Must the proud thought, that would aspire

To scan the Blest One's bright abode,
Bound to this world its high desire,

Content to bear a mortal load ?
Or, should my heart, through every vein,

The musk-bag's dark effusion wear,
What wonder ?-Since earth's trackless plaiu

With Khotan's deer I too must share !

a

Nay, trust not thou these vestments gay,

This idle flaunt of outward show,
While, as the taper wastes away,

Life's smouldering wrecks consume below.
Shine and dispel this sullen dream

From Hafiz' eyes, my secret soul !
Shine in thy light; and none shall deem

His breast disdains thy pure control.

« PoprzedniaDalej »