The High Commissioner in Haiti ( Russell ) to the Secretary of State
[Received August 20—8:25 p.m.]
92. Department’s 62 August 15, 3 p.m. Received the following note from the Haitian Government today:
“I have the honor of receiving the letter of the 17th August by which Your Excellency, in expressing to me the satisfaction which the Government of the United States feels in seeing that the essential conditions of the foreign loan are definitely agreed upon, asks the Haitian Government to examine anew three of the points contained in the note from this Department under date of the 8th August current.53[Page 510]
The Council of Secretaries of State, to which the new suggestions of the American Government have been submitted, has charged me to make known to Your Excellency that it does not see the inconvenience attached to the fixing of the minimum price to the loan at the time of sending out the proposals.54 However, it is well understood that the Haitian Government reserves the right of rejecting all bids.
In that which concerns the second point of the note of the 17th August informing me that the Government of Your Excellency desires to see my Government immediately take the necessary measures in view of the constitution of the Claims Commission, I am charged with renewing to Your Excellency the formal assurance that the Haitian member of the Commission will be named within 8 days, at the latest, after the loan of $16,000,000 shall have been signed.
As to the emission of the $5,000,000 of internal obligations at 6 percent to provide for the settlement of interior debt, the Council of Secretaries of State is of the opinion that the emission must necessarily be authorized by a law. This law will be presented to the Council of State, as soon as the notification of the signing of the loan contract, in the United States, of the $16,000,000 of the series A.
Without doubt, it is proper that the bankers asked to participate in the loan of 16 millions should know the exact amount of the second emission before submitting their offers for the first. And that is why the Government does not hesitate to renew its formal declaration that the series of the interior obligations will be exactly $5,000,000 covering all the interior debt.
Moreover, it results as much from the protocol of October 3rd, 1919, as far as we can understand the law of the loan which sanctioned it, that the general revenues of the Republic which must serve as a pledge to the loan of $40,000,000,55 the part of the customs receipts which guarantees the payment of certain credits as well for the interior as the exterior becomes by this action disaffected and employed exclusively to the service of the loan of 40 millions and in consequence of the emission of the 5 million of interior obligations which are but a slice of loan of 40 millions.”
The President informed me today that he expected to call a Council of State in extraordinary session about September 1st. He stated [Page 511] that the protocol had created Claims Commission and it was now only necessary to name members, issue decree compelling the attendance of witnesses and the production of papers and pass a law voting extraordinary credits for salaries and expenses.
- Quoted in the High Commissioner’s telegram no. 90, Aug. 11, 1922, 2 p.m., p. 506.↩
- Comparison with the French text, received Aug. 28, shows that this sentence should have been translated as follows: “The Council of Secretaries of State, to which the new suggestions of the American Government have been submitted, has charged me to make known to Your Excellency that it does not see any inconvenience in not fixing a minimum rate of issue of the loan at the time of calling for bids.” On Sept. 12 the Department called Gen. Russell’s attention to this discrepancy, and informed him that the Financial Adviser, acting on the terms of the note, would simply reserve the right to reject any or all bids.↩
- Comparison with the French text shows that this portion of the sentence should have been translated “Moreover, it results as much from the protocol of October 3rd, 1919, as from the loan law which sanctions it, that since the general revenues of the Republic must serve as a pledge to the loan of $40,000,000”.↩