File No. 893.773/23.

Ambassador Guthrie to the Secretary of State .

Sir: Continuing my correspondence with the Department on the subject of the apparent discrimination in the freight rates of the South Manchuria Railway against shipments from Shanghai to Newchwang and Dalny, I have the honor to transmit a copy of a memorandum recently given me, at my request, by the British Ambassador.

I have [etc.]

George W. Guthrie.
[Inclosure.]

Memorandum by the British Ambassador.

On June 22nd, 1914, the South Manchuria Railway Company issued a notification with reference to the freight rates to be levied from July 1st on certain through goods passing from Japan into Manchuria via Dairen.

His Britannic Majesty’s Ambassador thereupon addressed a brief note to the Japanese Minister for Foreign Affairs asking for an assurance that, as he [Page 600] presumed was the case, these rates apply equally to the same goods coming from other foreign countries, e. g. Great Britain or the Colonies.

On July 20 Baron Kato replied that “at present only through goods (either Japanese or foreign) from Japan via Dairen carried by vessels belonging to the Osaka Shosen Kwaisha or the Nippon Yusen Kwaisha are accorded the special reduced rates provided for by the notification in question; but that hereafter, in the case of goods from foreign countries, where application is made for through transport, the place of destination of the goods being given as Mukden or certain specified stations north of Mukden, there will be no objection to such goods being accorded the same treatment, as regards freight over the lines of the South Manchuria Railway, as goods coming from Japan.”

On September 9th His Britannic Majesty’s Consul at Dairen addressed a despatch to this Embassy enclosing a cutting from the Manchuria Daily News of September 5th showing the freight charges to be levied by the South Manchuria Railway Company on certain specific goods imported into Manchuria via Yingkou (Newchwang) from October. His Majesty’s Consul observes that these rates are practically the same as those levied on similar goods entering the country by way of Dairen or Antung.