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Relative Contribution of Palestinian Arabs and Jewish Government Revenue in Palestine before 1948 (Nakba), British Mandate: A Survey of Palestine: Volume II - Page 570. Chapter XIV: Finance: Section 6
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Posted on October 28, 2007
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British Mandate: A Survey of Palestine
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Section 6.


57. In its fiscal policy Government has been guided by the revenue requirements of the country as a whole and has not sought to distinguish the separate contributions made to revenue, and the separate benefits received from its expenditure, by the Arab, Jewish and other categories of the population. Such distinction cou Id not, in fact, be made for fiscal purposes in a community where there is no geographical or economic separation of the two great heterogeneous groups-with the single and important exception of the Jewish town of Tel Aviv.

58. The distinction of fiscal contributions and benefits, besides implying a denial of the principle of a common citizenship between Jew and Arab, is illegitimate in any fiscal system which seeks to follow the principle that the individual's contribution to the general revenue should be proportional lo the income and property which the existence of an ordered community enables him to obtain and enjoy. Nevertheless the community is composed of two main groups whose interests are in many important respects divergent and whose needs and wishes in the matter of Government services differ widely. Furthermore there is a marked difference in their economic activities which give rise to Government revenue. There is therefore a constant public speculation as to the relative contribution of Jews and Arabs to government revenue and the relative benefits derived therefrom. In the absence of separate budgets for the two divisions of the population it is not possible to give any precise estimate of the relative contributions and benefits. It is possible, however, to indicate broadly the relative contributions made in the form of direct taxes on income and property, although these do not constitute the greater part of Government revenue. A similar estimate can be made in the case of certain indirect taxes. This estimate is given below in respect of the fiscal year 1()44/45. It is emphasised that the estimate will vary greatly from year to year and that the choice of 1944/45 is merely a matter of convenience due to its being the latest year and the one in which the data is most detailed. In other ways it is not a happy choice as it shows certain abnormalities of war-