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to continue hostilities, and to con. as from every individual who con. tinue them with redoubled energy; poses it, the most perfect harmony this is my immutable resolution. I and mutual confidence between it rely upon the general assembly for and the government. Upon this the most firm and loyal co-opera. perfect harmony and mutual con. tion in sustaining the national ho. fidence, which on the part of the nour and glory, lest they suffer in government will be unalterable, I this affair.
boldly say, depends the welfare of With respect to the internal af. the constitutional system, the or. fairs, I congratulate myself and this derly march of administration, and assembly upon the order and tran. the national property, on which last quillity which reign in all the pro. rests the glory of my imperial vinces of this empire, which con. throne. The session is opened. vinces me in the highest degree, Constitutional emperor and per. the monarchial constitutional regi. petual defender of Brazil. men is rapidly strengthening.
I again call the attention of the MESSAGE TO ASSEMBLY. APRIL, 1829. chambers to the administration of finance and justice, which I so much August and worthy Representatives recommended to their cares in the of the Brazilian Nation, late session.
" The depreciation of the notes The finances and public credit of the Bank of Brazil, so injurious will receive a beneficial impulse to the interests of the state, as well from the law for funding the public as detrimental to the developement debt: but very prompt and efficient of public wealth, has occupied the legislative ineasures are necessary attention of the General Legislative to harmonize the different branches Assembly, during the two last ses. of their administration. The judi. sions. In both, the superabundance cial power has not yet received the or excessive amount of notes in cir. least improvement, and it is urgent. culation was acknowledged as the ly necessary that in the course of cause of that same depreciation; or this session it should be regulated rather of the agio of metallic specie ; according to the principles of the of the fall in the exchange ; of the constitution of the empire; that rise in all kinds of merchandise ; judgment may be awarded on con. of the increase in some branches of stitutional principles, which, insuring the national expenditure; of the to my subjects the security of pro. afflictions endured by numerous perty which the constitution gua. families; of the shifts to which the ranties to them under this head, public functionaries are driven, as will cause them to bless the sys. well as of private misery. tem, and assist me to maintain it. “ The law of the 15th November, The ministers and secretaries of 1827, by prohibiting new issues on state will present to the chambers, the part of the bank, and authoriz. with the exactness compatible with ing the calling in of 6,000 contos, the actual circumstances, the state at least, of the notes in circulation, of the various branches of the ad. most assuredly would have dimi. ministration.
nished, if not removed, that cause, I expect from the loyalty and if the means pointed out for the wisdom of this assembly, as well buying up or exchange of those notes had not failed when reduced be, delivered over to the bank. to practice, it being found impos. At the same time the government sible to sell government securities endeavoured to interest the board at par, bearing an interest of five of bank directors in the urgent per cent., according to the terms operation of calling in the notes, of article 22 of the said law. As, by allowing, for that purpose, only therefore, the means of calling in the sale of the precious metals the notes became impracticable, existing in its own coffers, and re. the prohibition of fresh issues could quiring the pledge of a real aid and not of itself suffice to repress intervention in the enterprise of the influence of the superabun. calling in as far as four thousand dance already existing and ac. contos of notes. Documents No. knowledged.
2 to 6 contain the correspondence, “During the last session, the which, on this subject, passed be. General Assembly had occasion to tween the treasury and the bank. observe that, notwithstanding for . “ Finally, from the month of six or eight months the amount of October in last year, the governnotes in circulation had been sta- ment resolved not to issue, as in tionary, the difficulty on that ac. fact it has not done up to tho pre. count was not the less aggravated. sent moment, any amount in bills The value of the precious metals of exchange from this place on Lon. did not cease to rise, and the rate don, or beyond the territory of the of exchange to fall; whilst, as no empire, at the same time taking legislative measure was enacted every due measure for the exact and before the close of the session, in necessary payment of the Brazilian order efficaciously to remedy the and Portuguese loans, contract. cause of the evil, it was consequent. ed in Enland, in the manner that ly to be expected and feared that it will be made known to the Assemwould go on increasing.
bly in due season. “The government, aware of the “Although these measures sus. impending calamity, in time busied tained the exchange at 30, during itself to adopt preventive measures. the two last months in the past year, After hearing the opinion of the they could not, nevertheless, any Council of State, it began to pur. longer answer the end for which chase notes of the bank, in order they were proposed, and the go. to withdraw them from circulation, vernment beheld with regret the agreeably to the 1st section of arti. inefficiency of the means left at its cle 21 of the aforesaid law of 15th disposal to dispel the torrent of November, confirmed by the de. discredit attending the bank paper. cree of the 20th of August in last In a word, the agio which in Janu. year ; and, as shown by documentary, 1828, was, in reference to cop. No. 1, it was able to sell, in Decem. per, silver, and gold, 20, 48, and ber in last year, and January in the 100 per cent., now became 40, 110, current one, as far as the amount and 190; whilst the exchange, of 1,934,600,000 reis of govern- which was then at 32, fell as low as ment securities, bearing an interest 20, and scarcely has it, at this of 6 per cent., which, at the price present time, attained 23, as may of 65, produced 1,257,490,000 reis, be seen from document No. 7; which, already have, or shortly will and this at a moment when the amount of notes in circulation, far year, attests that in 1827, 29,787 from having been increased, has, slaves entered this port; in 1828, on the contrary, experienced some 43,555; and that during the three reduction, owing to the calling in of first months of the present year, not them, which had already commen. yet quits complete, we have reced.
ceived 13,459. “In the opinion of the govern. “ Document No. 11, shows that ment, this phenomenon is no other the mint of the city, established in than the necessary effect of the 1803, has coined, from the period cause itself, so long ago acknow. of its opening to the 230 March in ledged, and at present aggravated the current year, 7,875,184,413 by some excess of impor:ation ; by reis in copper, viz., from its esta. the late effort in the slave trade; blishment to the end of December, by the forced issue of copper 1825, 2,633,529,350, and from the money, and by the failure of specu. commencement of January, 1826, lations, encouraged by the war and to the 23d of the last month, spoiled by the peace.
5,241,654,563. “ Document No. 8, exbibiting the “ These are the circumstances, annual revenue of the custom beyond all doubt, which have renhouse in this city, from the month dered the situation of the state of January, 1825, to the 26th of more difficult than it was fifteen March, in the current year, shows, months ago. To private interest in the year 1828, compared with and time it belongs to remedy the 1827, an increase of revenue equal evil which arose out of the exces. to 1,775,350,167 reis, which sup. sive importations of goods and poses an excess of imports amount. slaves ; whilst on the legislative ingto 11,836,000,000 reis, calculat. body alone it devolves to provide ing the duties at 15 per cent., and, against that resulting from a pre. at the same time, barring contra. judicial coin, by destroying the band and favourable valuations ; cause which rendered it neces. whereas, on tie other hand, docu. sary. ment No. 9, exhibiting the annual “ Even where any other proof revenue of the Export Board, dur. were wanting to the government, ing the same period, only shows in the painful experience of two years the year 1828, compared with 1827, would be sufficient to point out the an increase of 80,928,577 reis, urgent necessity of an heroic which supposes an excess of exports measure, in the crisis in which we amounting to 4,046,000,000 reis, are placed. duties being levied at 2 per cent. ; “ The report of the committee of and it is not to be presumed that inquiry, instituted by the decree the contraband articles, including and instructions of the 3d June in precious stones and metals, can last year, satisfying with every pos. scarcely amount to the difference sible exactitude the queries of the of 7,990,000,000 reis resulting in chamber respecting the situation of favour of the importation.
the bank, furnishes at the same time “Document No. 10, containing the most clear data at once to show a return of the slaves imported into the necessity of the salutary in. this place from January, 1820, to fluence of the legislative body in the 26th of March in the current the administration and affairs of
that establishment ; and to remove guish the debt of the government all doubt of its being possible to to the Bank. remedy, without sacrifices to the “Since, therefore, the sacrifice state, the evils arising out of a cir. is necessary, and that it becomes culation devoid of credit. The re. imperative, under present circum. port has been printed and submit. stances, to avail ourselves of some ted to the consideration of the Ge one of the means pointed out, the neral Assembly, and the members government is persuaded that the of the committee who presented first is not so dangerous as the se. it are deserving of public acknow. cond, nor so onerous as the third ; ledgment for the real with which and it is besides fully sensible of the they served and the difficulties necessity of takirg measures for the which they overcame.
administration and settlement of the • It is therefore unquestionable affairs of the bank, by supporting that the primary cause of the exist. and securing the circulation of its ing calamity is the superabundance notes, guaranteeing its deposits, of notes ; it is, consequently, our and by obtaining for the sharehold. duty to withdraw them as soon as ers a reasonable profit. I have possible. And as it cannot be ex. resolved to draw up, and, by his pected that the bank will be able majesty the Emperor's orders, I to realize so expensive an opera. have the honour to submit to you tion, the state is bound to do it, the following: since the state is a debtor to the Art. 1. The Bank of Brazil shall bank ; and the national credit, be administered by a commission which cannot sustain itself on any of seven members, four of whom other basis than justice and good shall be appointed by the governfaith, is highly implicated in its cir. ment, and three by a majority of culating medium.
votes of a general assembly of the " The government, convinced said bank. The government will of the solidity of the reasons above select the president of the commis. manifested, cannot but deplore the sion from among the seven mem. nature of the means which appear bers, and the said assembly shall obvious and efficient for this opera. fix the monthly remuneration which tion of paying off the discredited shall be due to their services. As notes. They are these-1st. To soon as the commission is installed, contract a loan in specie, sufficient all the existing agreements with the to cover the amount of the notes bank shall cease. lent to the government by the bank, Art. 2. The directing commission by applying new branches of the shall by incessantly engaged-first, revenue for the gradual extinction in withdrawing from circulation all of the same. 2dly. To convert the notes which are payable at the notes into paper-money of a different bank, or may have a metallic cur. standard, that they may circulate rency ; secondly, in ascertaining throughout the whole empire, by the exact number of notes in circu. assigning fresh capitals, in order lation, substituting for them new gradually to pay it off; and, 3dly, ones, which shall be signed by two to sell national property and impose members; thirdly, in winding up heavy taxes, in order that the pro. all the accounts of the bank, and ceeds may, in a few years, extin, especially those relating to the debt of government : fourthly, in liquida. of the administration of them ; and ting all the regular transactions of when the commission has conclu. the bank, which may be found still ded the liquidation of the bank's pending ; fifthly, in receiving the debts and credits, and redeemed its active credits of the bank, and li. notes, they shall distribute the ba. quidating the passive ones forthwith; lance which may remain among the and sixthly, in examining the state shareholders, and then dissolve the of the Bahia Orphans' Fund, and of establishment. St. Paul, and to liquidate both with Art. 7. The government shall be speed.
authorized to contract a loan in gold Art. 3. The government shall or silver specie, equal to the three give to the directing commission the fifths of the amount of its actual necessary instructions, and will debt to the bank. The produce of decide on cases of doubt, which this loan shall be exclusively ap. may occur in the execution of the plied to the purchase of notes of the preceding article.
said bank which are in circulation, Art. 4. The nation shall ac according to the value they may be knowledge the current value of the found to bear on the market : and present notes of the Brazil bank, all the notes thus bought up shall and those which may be substituted have no longer any value, excepting for them, so that they may freely as payment to the directing comcirculate, and be received as readi. mission on account of the said debt ly as specie by the public until they to the bank. are duly redeemed, in security for Art. 8. The purchased notes from which the primitive funds of the the market, which are to be can. bank are assigned—that is, its celled and delivered to the direct. funds of reserve, or the metallic ing commission, shall remain for funds existing in its coffers, the the account of the Junta, and emdebt of the government, the debts ployed in the reserve fund created of private individuals to the bank, by the law of the 16th of Novem. and every thing else which may ber, 1827, so that they may be constitute the credits of the bank. delivered up by the public treasury The deposits in the bank are also to the Junta in extinction of the said assigned as security to the public. loan, in proportion as they are
Art. 5. The debt of the govern. received. ment to the bank, before and after Art. 9. The produce of the loan, the liquidation by the directing authorized by the present law, shall commission, shall continue to pay not be applied to any purpose but an interest of 1 per cent., which will that which is specified in the 7th be given by the public treasury article, on pain of the penalties to the said commission, that it may attached to those who dissipate the be divided half-yearly among the national property ; neither shall the shareholders.
bank note withdrawn with that pro. Art. 6. The directing commis. duce be applied to any other purpose sion shall render to the government than that specified in that article, a monthly account of their labours, under pain of the same penalties. and shall every year lay before Art. 10. (This article authorizes the Legislative Assembly a state. the Chamber of Deputies to furnish ment of the affairs of the bank, and the necessary subsidies, or a suffi.