CHAPTER IV
GOVERNMENT CONTROL OF FOREIGN TRADE RELATIONS

§ 1. Up to this point very little has been said about international relations. The problems of public finance, other than the several tax problems discussed in Part II. Chapters XVII.-XX., have been tacitly assumed to be, in the main, domestic problems. In normal conditions this assumption is fully warranted. Commerce between the citizens of different countries does, indeed, take place, often on a large scale, and capital for enterprises in one country is sometimes raised in others. Governments, however, do not as a general rule either make purchases or borrow abroad to any large extent, nor do they interfere at all with the financial expression that is given to the industrial and monetary relations of their countries in the rates of exchange between different moneys. In abnormal circumstances, however, such as were exemplified in the Great War and the years immediately following it, the position is different. Government purchases and loans abroad become, or may become, an important part of public finance. The purpose of the present chapter is to examine this matter in a brief and summary way.

§ 2. Prior to 1914 the United Kingdom was accustomed to import large quantities of food and raw material and to pay for them out of her claims for interest upon loans formerly made by her citizens to foreigners and out of the proceeds of the sale of current exports of coal, manufactured articles and shipping and banking services. In these transactions the government had little or no direct concern. During the course of the war there came into existence an enormous new government need for imports of munitions, and our

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