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Coll 6/83 'Saudi Arabia: Exemption of Saudi nationals from Koshan tax.' [‎6r] (11/34)

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The record is made up of 1 file (15 folios). It was created in 1 Jun 1937-12 May 1939. It was written in English. The original is part of the British Library: India Office The department of the British Government to which the Government of India reported between 1858 and 1947. The successor to the Court of Directors. Records and Private Papers.


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^popy of iiir R. Bullard’s personal letter No. 979/265/1 of &ay 6th.#
^^36» addressed to Hie Royal Highness the Amir Faisal.
Your Royal Highness*
^fter Cornpliraents*
I have the honour to draw your attention to the twelfth
paragraph of the report on the Arab Gar Company which appeared
in ho. 305 of the ’’Saut al KijaE" * doted May 4th.* which
contains the following passage:
’The Government’s decision to exempt citizens of the
country from payment of koshan was a great kindness* The
number of passengers and visitors increased* and not only
did the Company profit thereby* but the country in general
benefited* and the economic condition of Medina revived.”
The decision of the Saudi Arabian Government which
appeared in the "Saut al Hijaz” Ho. 266 of May 11th. 1937
exempts local citizens from payment of koshan during the off
season* but withholds this privilege from foreign residents*
Now it is reasonable that foreign pilgrims should pay the
koshan* at any time of the year* but I suggest to Your Royal
Highness that it would be more just* as well as in the economic
interests of Saudi Arabia* if foreign residents were treated
in the same mauner as local citizens in this respect and were
exempted from payment of koshan during the off-season* I know
that my Government hold the same views and I timet that Your
Royal Highness will sdait that they are just and reasonable
and will endeavour to have this example of discrimination
against foreign residents re/fioved*
With highest respects*

About this item


This file documents the British response to a recent Saudi royal command exempting Saudi nationals from paying a tax known as koshan (a tax levied on journeys from Jedda to Mecca or Medina) during the off-season, i.e. the four-month period of the year when pilgrims are not travelling to or returning from Mecca or Medina.

The correspondence discusses British concerns that British subjects in Saudi Arabia (who along with other foreigners would still have to pay the tax) are being discriminated against; it also records the outcome of a request made to the Saudi Government by His Majesty's Minister at Jedda (Sir Reader William Bullard) for the tax exemption to be extended to foreign residents.

The file includes a divider which gives a list of correspondence references contained in the file by year. This is placed at the back of the correspondence (folios 2).

Extent and format
1 file (15 folios)

The papers are arranged in approximate chronological order from the rear to the front of the file.

Physical characteristics

Foliation: the foliation sequence (used for referencing) commences at the front cover with 1, and terminates at the inside back cover with 17; these numbers are written in pencil, are circled, and are located in the top right corner of the recto The front of a sheet of paper or leaf, often abbreviated to 'r'. side of each folio.

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English in Latin script
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Coll 6/83 'Saudi Arabia: Exemption of Saudi nationals from Koshan tax.' [‎6r] (11/34), British Library: India Office Records and Private Papers, IOR/L/PS/12/2156, in Qatar Digital Library <> [accessed 17 November 2019]

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