The Ambassador in Spain (Moore) to the Secretary of State
[Received November 13.]
Sir: In confirmation of this Embassy’s Cable No. 106, of October 25, 12 Noon,24 I have the honor to report that the Commercial Agreement of August 1, 1906, has been prorogued for six months from the date of its expiration on November 5th next; i. e., until May 5, 1924. This prorogation has been accomplished by an exchange of Notes between the Spanish Foreign Office and this Embassy (Foreign Office Note No. 119, of October 6th, and Embassy’s Note No. 64, of October 22d), copies and translations of which are enclosed.
I am also enclosing copy and translation of a personal letter to me, dated October 22d [6th],24 from the President of the Military Directorate, requesting that I recommend personally to the Department of State that it cause an investigation to be made by the Tariff Commission regarding the customs duties on certain Spanish products. I can make this recommendation in perfect sincerity as I have been repeatedly informed that it is useless to recommence negotiations looking toward the signature of the Permanent Treaty unless [Page 872]the Tariff Commission should prove willing, after an investigation, to lower the duties on at least several Spanish products. Moreover, the President had already informed me that the Department of State had told Ambassador Riaño (see my Cable No. 103, of October 22, 4 P.M.) that the Department was willing to cause an investigation of certain duties to be made under Section 315 of our Tariff Act. He also told me that, in the negotiations during the early part of the summer, the representative of the State Department and the Commercial Attaché had stated that, while there was no guarantee that any investigations or reductions in the Tariff would be granted, it was within the province of the Tariff Commission to investigate and recommend such reductions. In this connection, I would be very glad to be informed whether or not the Department did inform Ambassador Riaño as alleged by the President of the Military Directorate.
I informed the President that I would recommend to my Government that it take up this matter, but I had previously told both him and the Undersecretary of State that I did not believe that this proposition came within the interpretation of Section 315 of the Tariff Act.
With regard to the suggestion contained in my Cable No. 105, of October 23, 7 P.M., I have the honor to report that I considered it imperative to place the suggestion in question before the Department as, up to the time of the sending of the cable, the Department had proved unwilling to accept in terms acceptable to the Spanish Government the latter’s proffer to prorogue the Treaty without giving the United States advantages ceded in future commercial treaties.
The present prorogation has only been secured after the most strenuous efforts, as the attitude of the Spanish Foreign Office has been that, unless some action should prove possible under Section 315–A of the American Tariff Act, a prolongation would prove useless, as no agreement would be possible regarding a permanent treaty.
I am very anxious to recommence negotiations for a permanent treaty without a moment’s delay, but, in view of the attitude of the Spanish Government, as outlined above, I have the honor to request full instructions from the Department as to the manner in which it desires the negotiations to be conducted. Will it be possible to make use of Section 315, and, if not, what answer can be made to the Spanish contention that the Spanish Law prevents the granting of most-favored-nation treatment except in return for specific advantages? I also have the honor to request that a representative of the Department of State be sent to Madrid to assist in these negotiations.[Page 873]
As enclosures 6 and 7,25 I have the honor to transmit, in copy and translation, a notice relative to the prorogation of the Treaty published by the Ministry of State in the Gaceta de Madrid of October 28th, 1924 .
I have [etc.]