The Director of the Association of Producers of Petroleum in Mexico (Stevens) to the Assistant Secretary of State (Olds)

Dear Colonel Olds: Although it is somewhat late, I am enclosing herewith a translation of the telegram received here December 30 in reply to the telegram sent to President Calles and Minister Morones on the night of December 27, of which you already have a copy.

Respectfully yours,

Guy Stevens

The Mexican Secretary of Industry, Commerce, and Labor (Morones) to the Director of the Association of Producers of Petroleum in Mexico (Stevens)

Replying to your message of yesterday I respectfully make known to you that, having addressed (yourselves) to the Citizen President of the Republic in the same words in which you addressed (yourselves) to this Department, the said high official replied to you in a message of today as follows:63

“Your message of yesterday, in keeping (consonancia) with all the things (hechos) that have been taking place in connection with the discussion regarding the law regulatory of Constitutional Article 27 in the branch of petroleum and its Regulations, goes to confirm my view (criterio) that it is not the petroleum industry’s own peculiar [Page 676] (propio) interest but causes very foreign (thereto) which lie back of (motivan) the attitude of rebellion of some companies (empresas) with regard to compliance with the law. The precepts of the law in question, issued by the legislative power of the nation within the sovereignty which our constitutional principles give to it, have been regulated and applied by this Executive power within the ample and liberal criterion allowed by our institutions, making clear in definite form the rights and obligations which they (said precepts) contain for the good of the industry, and I regret (lamentando) that all the facilities granted have not been reciprocated on the part of the companies (empresas) and individuals engaged in petroleum exploitation.

“I consider the law good, and also that its precepts, under the most rigorous juridical interpretation, neither injure nor destroy rights legitimately acquired, not only leaving amply guaranteed the interests of the industry but also assuring its greatest development to the advantage of those engaged in it; wherefore with regret (pena) I make known to you that I find no justification for the prorogation which you request.

“It surprises me that the Compañia Mexicana Holandesa ‘La Corona’, the Compañia Mexicana de Petroleo ‘El Aguila’, the Richmond Petroleum Company and the Compañia Transcontinental de Petroleo, which are Mexican corporations and which have submitted all their rights to the law (by) applying for their confirmatory concessions, should appear as signers of a petition for extension of the time for submitting, as does also the attitude of the Compañia Mexicana Productora y Refinadora de Petroleo ‘La Atlántica’ and the Compañia Petrolera Los Chijoles, which are Mexican corporations which have submitted (themselves) to all the laws bv virtue of their articles of incorporation. Respectfully, General P. Elias Calles.”

I repeat to you my assurances of esteem.

  1. The President’s reply to the oil companies was published in the Mexico Excelsior of Dec. 30, 1926. A copy of the reply in translation was transmitted to the Department in the Embassy’s despatch No. 3469, Dec. 30, 1926; despatch not printed.