Jorusalem (Oct. 28)
The British Parliamentary elections have been followed with intense interest in Palestine, especially by the Jewish population, and though all the papers, including “The Palestine Bulletin”, issued extra election editions, containing the latest figures, all newspaper offices were besieged by telephonic enquiries from people anxious to have still later results.
Apart from the desire to know the state of parties, insofar as it bears on the composition of the Government which will be responsible as Mandatory for the administration of Palestine, there is also the anxiety about the Palestine pound which is linked up with the pound sterling, and the hope that the National Government will succeed in stabilising its currency, to the advantage also of the people of Palestine.
PALESTINE CURRENCY: Â£2,344, 664 IN CIRCULATION
A statement was issued in Jerusalem a few days ago by the Palestine Currency Board, according to which the coins and notes in circulation in Palestine at the end of September amounted to a total value of Â£2,344,664.
The number of Â£P.100 notes in circulation is only 100, and the numbers grow as one goes down the scale in the value of notes. There are over a thousand Â£P.50 notes; some 24,000 Â£P.5 notes, nearly a million pound notes, and some 200,000 ten-shilling notes.
The 50 mils piece of which there are nearly 2Â½ million, heads the list for the largest number of coins, with the half-piastre a close second. The ten mil piece comes next, then the mil, the 100 mil silver coin, the 20 mil piece and at the bottom of the scale the bronze two mil, of which there are approximately half a million.
The Palestine Chambers of Commerce have been following closely the position of the pound sterling. Recently the Jewish Chamber of Commerce in Haifa issued a statement to its members, assuring them that there is no ground for apprehension that the pound sterling will drop below the present level.
The Chamber anticipates an early stabilisation of the pound, the statement went on, and merchants who have contracted for goods in sterling were asked to inform the Chamber of cases where the exporter demanded payment in other currency, where more than the contracted price was demanded, or where British firms had raised prices.
The Jerusalem Chamber of Commerce held an emergency meeting last week at which it discussed trade conditions in the light of the fall in sterlin, and of a large number of reports which it has received regarding cases in which goods were purchased in Europe on a sterling basis and for which Palestine merchants are now being asked to pay the difference in exchange.