the Arabs are nearly all traders, as are some of the Chinese, but a large number of the latter are labourers in the Sumatra tobacco plantations and the tin mines of Banka, Billiton, &c. The bulk of the natives are agriculturists.
Religion and Instruction.—Entire liberty is granted to the members of all religious confessions. The Reformed Church has about 40 ministers and 30 assistants, the Roman Catholic 35 curates and 20 priests, not salaried out of the public funds. There are about 170 Christian missionaries, and the progress of their work may be illustrated by showing that the number of Christians among the natives and foreign Orientals was:—
|In 1873.||In 1896.||In 1903.|
|In Java and Madura||5,673||19,193||About 34,000|
|In the Outposts||148,672||290,065||About 390,000|
About 10,000 natives go annually to Mecca on pilgrimage.
Both the government and private enterprise maintain vernacular schools. Large sums have been voted in Holland for the establishment of primary and secondary schools, and the government has undertaken to assist in the establishment of parochial schools, the object being that every village, at least in Java, should possess one. There are schools for higher education at Batavia, Surabaya and Semarang; at the first two of these towns are government schools for mechanical engineering, and at Batavia a crafts school and a medical school for natives. There are five colleges for native schoolmasters and four for sons of native officials. Government schools for the European education of Chinese children are established in the principal towns. Private mechanical and crafts schools are established at Jokjakarta, Surabaya and Semarang, and there is an agricultural school at Buitenzorg.
Justice.—As regards the administration of justice, the distinction is maintained between (1) Europeans and persons assimilated with them (who include Christians and Japanese), and (2) natives, together with Chinese, Arabs, &c. The former are subject to laws closely resembling those of the mother country, while the customs and institutions of natives are respected in connexion with the administration of justice to the latter. In 1906 a bill was passed somewhat modifying the existing status of the classes above mentioned, and especially directing new ordinances with regard to the judicial treatment of Christian natives. A general judicial revision being also in contemplation, this bill did not immediately come into force. Justice for Europeans is administered by European judges, but, as with administration at large so in judicial matters, native chiefs have extensive powers in native affairs. For European justice the High Court of Justice is established at Batavia; there are councils of justice at Batavia, Semarang and Surabaya, with authority not only over Java but over parts of the Outposts; there is a resident court of justice in each residency. For native justice there are courts in the districts and regencies; residents act as police judges; provincial councils have judicial powers, and there are councils of priests with powers in matrimonial disputes, questions of succession, &c.
As regards pauperism, the government subsidizes Protestant and Catholic orphan houses.
Finance.—The revenue of Netherlands India has been derived mainly from customs, excise, ground-tax, licences, poll-tax, &c., from monopolies—opium, salt and pawn-shops (the management of which began to be taken over by the government in 1903, in place of the previous system of farming-out), coffee, &c., railways, tin mines and forests, and from agricultural and other concessions. But attempts have been made, and have been largely successful, to make the revenue dependent to a less extent on monopolies and the products (especially agricultural) of the land; and to abolish licences and substitute direct taxes. There is a progressive income-tax for Europeans, and the system has also been applied in the case of natives.
The following table affords comparisons in the revenue and expenditure:—
The monetary system is similar to that of Holland (the unit being the guilder), but there are also certain silver and copper coins of small value bearing Malay or Javanese inscriptions. The Java Bank, established in 1828, with headquarters at Batavia, is the only bank issuing notes, two-fifths of the amount of which must be covered by specie or bullion. The government has a control over the administration of this bank.
Defence.—The army is purely colonial, i.e. distinct from that of the Netherlands. Its strength is a little under 40,000, about one-third being Europeans of various nationalities and two-thirds natives of various races. No portion of the regular army of the Netherlands is allowed to be sent on colonial service, but individual soldiers are at liberty to enlist, by permission of their commanding officers, in the army of Netherlands India, and they form its nucleus. Native and European soldiers are generally mixed together in the same battalions, though in separate companies. The officers were all Dutch till 1908, when a trial was made of native officers from noble Javanese families. The artillery is composed of European gunners, with native riders, while the cavalry are Europeans and natives. A military academy is established at Meester Cornelis, near Batavia. Schools for soldiers are attached to every battalion. There are certain local forces outside the regular army—militia in some of the large towns, native infantry in Madura, and guards of some of the vassal princes. Unlike the army, which is purely colonial, the navy in Netherlands India is partly colonial, partly belonging to the royal navy of the Netherlands, and its expenses are therefore borne partly by the mother country and partly by the colony. About six ironclads and twenty smaller vessels of the royal navy are stationed in colonial waters; the vessels of the colonial marine number about twenty-four, and undertake police supervision, prevention of slave trading, &c.
Trade and Industries.—The principal articles of export are sugar, tobacco, copra, forest products (various gums, &c.), coffee, petroleum, tea, cinchona, tin, rice, pepper, spices and gambier. The average annual value of exports during 1900–1905 was £22,496,468, and of imports £17,050,338. A great proportion of the exports goes to the mother country, though a considerable quantity of rice is exported to China. An indication of the mineral products has already been given; as regards the export trade, tin is the most important of these, but the Ombilin coalfields of Sumatra, connected by a railway with the coast, call for mention here also. Agricultural labour is very carefully regulated by law, in the enforcement of which the residents and lower officials have wide powers. One day’s gratuitous labour out of seven or more can be demanded of labourers either on private or on government estates; but in 1882 this form of labour was for the most part abolished as far as government estates were concerned, each labourer so exempted paying one guilder per year. The principal private agricultural estates are in the west of Java, in which island the greater part of the soil is government property. Such estates have increased greatly in number and extent, not only in Java but elsewhere, since the agrarian law of 1870, under which it became possible for settlers to obtain waste lands on hereditary lease for 75 years. In 1899 the total acreage of land ceded was 1,002,766 acres; in 1903 it was 1,077,295. The government ceased to cultivate sugar in 1891, but coffee, and to some extent cinchona, are cultivated on government plantations, though not in equal quantity to that grown on land held on emphyteusis. The average annual yield of sugar in 1900–1905 was 852,400 tons, but it increased steadily during that period. The average annual yield of coffee during the same period was 101,971,132 ℔; it fluctuates greatly. The average annual production of tobacco is about fifty million pounds from each of the islands of Java and Sumatra. The total annual yield of the tin mines is about 15,000 tons, and of the coal mines 240,000 tons. The average output of petroleum annually in 1900–1905 was 120,000,000 gallons; this, again, has fluctuated greatly. There are upwards of 3000 miles of railways and steam tramways in Netherlands India, but these are almost entirely in Java; elsewhere only Sumatra has a few short lines. The principal steamship company in the archipelago is the Royal Packet (Koninklyke Paketvaart) Company.
Bibliography.—See Aardrijkskundig en statistisch Woordenboek van Nederl. Indië (Amsterdam, 1869), to which P. J. Veth and other specialists were contributors. A general survey of the people, administration and resources of the Dutch colony is provided in Twentieth Century Impressions of Netherlands India, ed. by Arnold Wright (London, 1910). See also A. R. Wallace, Malay Archipelago (London, 1869, and later editions, notably for zoological distribution) and Island Life (London, 1880, notably for ornithology). H. O. Forbes, A Naturalist’s Wanderings in the Eastern Archipelago (London, 1885); P. van der Lith, Nederlandsch Oostindië (2nd ed., Leiden, 1893–1895); F. H. H. Guillemard, Australasia, vol. ii., in Stamford’s Compendium (London, 1894); Encyclopaedie van Nederlandsch-Indië (the Hague, 1895–1904); Guide à travers la section des Indes néerlandaises, Paris Exhibition (the Hague, 1900); A. R. Colquhoun, The Mastery of the Pacific (London, 1902); M. Weber, Der indo-australische Archipel und die Geschichte seiner Tierwelt (Jena, 1902); G. Karsten and H. Schenck, Vegetationsbilder, vol. ii. (Jena, 1903); J. van Bemmelen and G. B. Hooyer, Guide through Netherlands India (London, 1903); D. Bezemer, Nederlandsch Oost-Indië (the Hague, 1904); H. Blink, Nederlandsch Oost- en West-Indië, geographisch, ethnologisch, en economisch beschreven (Leiden, 1904, sqq.). Among Dutch official publications may be mentioned Jaarcijfers door het Centraal Bureau voor de Statistiek; Jaarboek van het Mijnwezen in Nederlandsch Oost-Indië (Amsterdam); Koloniale-Economische Bijdragen (the Hague); Koloniaal Verslag (the Hague); Regeerings-Almanak voor Nederlandsch-Indië (Batavia). A number of important periodicals (Tijdschrift) of various institutions are issued at Batavia, &c. Languages: P. J. Veth in De Gids (1864); R. N. Cust, Sketch of the Modern Languages of the East Indies (London, 1878); and for bibliography, Boele van Neusbroek, De Beoefening der oostersche talen ... (Leiden, 1875).