Mr. Williams to Mr. Seward
Sir: I have the honor to enclose translation of a despatch received from the foreign office relating to the extension of the privilege accorded to vessels trading along the coast of China to those which ply between this country and [Page 474] Japan and Saigon, (the only port yet opened in French Annam,) of paying tonnage dues once in four months. The number of steamers now running regularly between Shanghai and Japanese ports is five, but the trade employs many more vessels; and this concession will be an advantage to a score or two of small craft plying between the two countries.
I forward you a synoptical report of the foreign trade with China during the year 1864, made out according to the instructions of the inspector general of customs, which, I have no doubt, gives a better idea of the commerce with this empire than has before been made.
I have the honor to be, sir, your obedient servant,
Hon. William H. Seward, Secretary of State, Washington, D. C.