they themselves buy from us very little or nothing at all.
“Great Britain levies duties on our citrus, which, this season already, will amount to at least Â£300,000, in fact, the duty represents as much as half of the actual cost of production of the fruit. In practically all other European countries quotas and currency restrictions or prohibitive duties, make it extremely difficult for us to increase our sales.
“Our principal competitors, Spain and Italy, have found it possible to overcome the difficulties created by these restrictions, thanks to the fact-that their governments have been able to conclude favorable commercial treaties or clearing agreements with the countries in which they market their fruit, but Palestine remains like a fatherless child, whom everybody is free to kick and exploit, and whom nobody will protect.
“In the case of several countries with whom Great Britain has commercial treaties embodying the most favored nation clause, the mandatory power has not even troubled to arrange that the benefits of this clause be extended to Palestine.
“In other cases, such as Austria, where Palestine is supposed to be entitled to most favored nation treatment, this provision is being invaded and in some round about way Italian citrus shippers have been accorded privileges in the matter of custom duties which make it impossible for us to compete. Roumania, which sells annually about half a million pounds worth of goods to Palestine, graciously permits us to sell to it citrus fruit for less than one tenth of that amount.
“Similar difficulties are encountered in Poland, Germany and other countries,” said Mr. Tolkowsky, “and to any proposal intended to force those countries which sell to us also to buy from us, the mandatory power knows only one reply: It is not permitted under the terms of the Mandate.
This is the position with which the citrus industry of Palestine is faced; these are the conditions under which we have to try to ship and sell not only a rapidly increasing citrus crop, but the principal economic asset of the country.”