Commission on Commerce

Commission on Commerce

 

a government body in 18th-century Russia that considered projects for the development of trade and studied ways to improve the economy and position of the merchant class.

The first commission existed from 1727 to 1729, the second from 1760 to 1762, and the third from 1763 to 1796. The Commission on Duties (1753–57) performed similar functions. The first Commission on Commerce reviewed earlier edicts on peasant trade and prepared the tariff of 1731. The Commission on Duties brought about the abolition of customs in Russia and the Ukraine and prepared the 1755 Customs Edict and the 1757 tariff. The third commission was the most important. It drew up the 1766 customs tariff and considered questions dealing with Russian trading companies in the Mediterranean Sea, peasant trade, and the division of the merchants into classes, as well as many projects for the development of trade; however, internal disagreements prevented it from reaching decisions on any of these matters. After 1768 it was transformed into a minor consultative body dealing with questions of the economy.

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