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Belgian Guatemala, First Colony of the Belgian Colonial Empire (Documentary)

10 Bekeken
Belgisch Congo
gepubliceerd op 02/Juli-/21 / In Film & Animatie / Documentaire

Encouraged by King Léopold I of Belgium, a small group of investors in 1841 organized the Belgian Colonization Company to take advantage of economic opportunities in Guatemala. In 1842 the limited-liability company purchased 264,000 acres of undeveloped lands and assumed concessions and obligations for immigration, construction of a deep-water port, and other economic development in the department of Santo Tomás on Guatemala's north coast. In return the company received monopolies and exemptions favoring its commerce over all competitors. It could collect tolls for ten years on the planned road between the port and the Motagua River, and it would hold a ten-year monopoly on steam navigation on the river. Foreign immigrants to the Santo Tomás colony automatically became Guatemalan citizens and enjoyed a twenty-year exemption from most taxes. They were exempt from all commodity monopolies but were prohibited from introducing goods under estanco from the colony into the interior. Although obligated to serve in the municipal militia, the colonists were exempt from service to Guatemala.

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