No. 539.
Mr. Christiancy to Mr. Blaine.

No. 266.]

Sir: The new Peruvian Government, having on the 14th instant arranged with the Chilian authorities here to pay down 200,000s. silver, of the million then due for February, according to the Chilian decree, [Page 890] and to pay the balance, 800,000 silver soles, within one month, I here inclose you copy and translation of the decree of this Peruvian Government, dated the 14th, but published only yesterday, for raising the amount in the shape of what is called a loan, and which, so far as the decree shows, would seem to be a voluntary loan; but as it seems to me quite probable that few will come forward voluntarily to take the loan, I presume the government must look to some means to enforce it as a forced loan; if not, I am inclined to think the money will not be raised in time.

The three-and-a-half pence mentioned in the decree is intended as the value of the paper sol, practically the only currency now circulating in Peru, the gold and silver coin having almost entirely left the country, as is usual, if not universal, where an inferior currency is in general circulation.

And Peru, from having formerly been thought the richest country in precious metals in the world, is now probably the poorest for practical purposes, though she still has inexhaustible mines, mostly unworked, in the interior.

I have, &c.,

[Inclosure in No. 266.—Translation.]

In conformity to the agreement of the council of ministers, proceed to raise a national loan, destined to cover the war contribution imposed by the chief of the Chilian forces, on the following contributions:

The loan will draw an interest of six per cent., per annum.
It will be repaid in fiscal notes, at an exchange not less than three-and-a-half pence per sol. The amounts paid in, for this loan, in pounds sterling, shall be reckoned at this same exchange.
The reimbursement shall be made out of the outstanding and accruing taxes on property in Lima and Callao; 30 per cent, of the free income of the Callao custom-house, and with the income of the stamp contribution.
The administration and recovery of the taxes and stamp contribution shall be confided to a commission selected from among the lenders.
The refunding shall be at par, and by lots, paying the capital and interest on same.

Communicate it; have it registered and published.

Signature of his excellency,