560.M2/47: Telegram

The Chief of the American Delegation (Wilson) to the Secretary of State

13. Group 2, second meeting. Many thanks for prompt instructions in your October 20, 8 p.m., on basis of which I presented our point of view regarding French proposal reported in my 8, October 19, 11 p.m. I was unable to obtain in entirety text desired but believe that a satisfactory compromise was reached. It reads as follows: [Page 276]

“In the case of any prohibitions or restrictions which may be applied within the limits set by the present agreement, the contracting states shall in the matter of licenses comply strictly with the following provisions (first follows (a), (b), (c), and (d) referred to on page 3, last paragraph your 65, and a further paragraph reading as follows:) “As regards the allocation of quotas, the contracting states, without laying down any rule as to the method to be adopted, consider that an equitable distribution of these quotas is an essential condition of an equitable treatment of commerce between states.”

I explained that we were primarily concerned with the obligatory character of the contractual obligations and that therefore I preferred that this should be incorporated in the body of the convention. However, it was pointed out, and I think correctly, that the last paragraph is not of such a nature as normally to be included in the body or text of a convention. The committee agreed, however, to incorporate in the protocol the following words: “The present protocol will have the same force, effect and duration as the convention of today’s date, of which it is to be considered as an integral part.”

I am convinced that the Department will be preoccupied rather with the binding force of this obligation than with its position in the text and since we are satisfied on the first point I acquiesced in this arrangement.