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In the preamble to the Budget Law it was stated that the Estimates were based upon the results obtained in 1903, due allowance being made for certain suggested modifications in the existing system of taxation. The most important changes which it was proposed to introduce were as follows:-reductions in the taxes on property situated in towns, on profits from commercial and other enterprises, on the transport of merchandise by land and sea, in the tax on consumption, and in the "Donations" of the Clergy. These, together with some reductions already voted in the spring of the current year, were expected to diminish the burden borne by the taxpayers to the extent of, in round figures, some 27,000,000 pesetas. On the other hand, the Law contained a clause providing for the approval by Congress of a Bill presented in January last and intended to effect extensive reforms with regard to the tax on spirits, which would, it was estimated, increase the yield of this tax by about pesetas 16,500,000.
The Budget Law also included the usual clauses providing for the elasticity of certain credits, such as those for the service of the Debt, etc., so as to enable the Government to meet all obligations which might be recognised. The amount of new floating Treasury Debt which might be contracted in the course of the financial year was fixed at one quarter of the total estimated Expenditure.
The Council are indebted to Señor Cenon de Alisal, Director-General of the Public Debt at Madrid, for kindly
furnishing them with the following statement of the National Debt of Spain :
SCHEDULE OF THE DEBT OUTSTANDING ON 1ST JANUARY, 1904, AND OF APPROPRIATIONS FOR INTEREST AND AMORTISATION IN RESPECT THEREOF INCLUDED IN THE BUDGET FOR 1905.
The annexed Table gives the details of the total appropriations for the service of the Public Debt in the Budget for 1904 and the Ministerial Estimates for 1905:
Interest on Five per Cent. Consolidated Debt due to the
Interest on Four per Cent. Perpetual Exterior Debt (Sealed
Interest on Four per Cent. Perpetual Internal Debt, Non-
the Four per Cent. Perpetual Internal Debt..
Service of Five per Cent. Redeemable Debt ..
Total Credits for State Debt
Voted by Cortes.
asked for in Ministerial
SUMMARY OF CREDITS FOR PUBLIC DEBT SERVICE.
Pesetas. Pesetas, 383,306,131 384,056,057 21,736,108 15,773,762
The apparent discrepancy between the total of the figures given in the two last columns of the foregoing Schedule of the Debt outstanding and those shown in the above Summary of Credits for the Debt Service for 1904, is accounted for by the fact that the latter include additional items, such as commissions, etc.
The only other point calling for special notice in connection with the above Table is the considerable decrease in the assignment for the service of the Treasury Debt, which is due to the final liquidation of the advance from the Tobacco Régie Company made in 1896. This sum formed part of the resources of the Extraordinary Budget of that year, which, it will be remembered, was suppressed at the end of 1901.
ASSETS AND LIABILITIES.
According to the returns published in the Gaceta de Madrid the position of the Bank on 25th June, 1904, was as follows:
BANK OF SPAIN.
Pesetas. 367,909,219. 10* 513,258,945-73 44,950,961.83* 852,680,883.30† 108,043, 501.19 2,136,646.61
12,270,000.00 13,769,271.30 369,250,261.25 4,636,413.67 6,898,575.05
Of these amounts pesetas 5,712,271.18 and pesetas 9,559,236.77 respectively were for account of the Treasury.
+ Including pesetas 650,000,000 of Treasury "Pagarés."
1892 Note circulation
The following Statement shows the note circulation of the Bank of Spain about the middle of each year 1892
NOTE.-The nominal value of the Peseta is 94d., or 25.225 Pesetas to the Sterling. The present value of the Peseta (July, 1904) is slightly less than 7d.