The Minister in Egypt (Howell) to the Secretary of State
[Received November 23.]
Sir: I have the honor to call the Department’s attention to the subject of taxation as applied to Egypt, same known as Gaffir Tax, a police provision respecting which there has recently arisen, by reason of suspension of Martial Law, not a little agitation. While Egypt was under Martial Law in 1915 (and only recently abolished) a proclamation was issued by British authority as follows: “All persons in Egypt wherever resident and of whatever nationality who are, or shall be assessed by the local authorities for the payment of Gaffir cess in accordance with the rule and practice heretofore followed, are hereby required regularly and punctually to pay such cess during the period of the war.”
Investigation develops the fact that this Gaffir cess was claimed from and paid by foreign residents before the war, and that the proclamation was issued merely as a military order to facilitate the collection of a particular and recognizable tax, ear-marked to contribute to the public security.
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I have [etc.]
- This note was sent by the Egyptian Ministry of Finance to the British Consulate at Cairo with a view to its subsequent communication to the consuls of the other powers.↩