821.6363 Barco/110: Telegram

The Secretary of State to the Minister in Colombia (Piles)

38. Your telegram 58, July 17, noon. Please present to Minister for Foreign Affairs a note reading as follows:

“I am directed by my Government to call your attention again to the serious situation in which the American companies interested in the Barco concession are left by the continued failure of the Colombian [Page 619] Government to reply to the memorial submitted by the Compania Colombiana del Petroleo on March 16, 1926, requesting reconsideration of the decree of the Government declaring the concession forfeited. On January blank, 1928, I sent you, under instructions of my Government, a note calling attention to the long period of time which had elapsed since the presentation of the memorial, and inquiring whether the Government of Colombia would not, without further unnecessary delay, make reply to the memorial. On February 17, (verify date), you informed me that a decision would be rendered within a month, perhaps less than 20 days. Five months have elapsed since that statement was made. Again, on March 22, I was advised by the President that a decision would be rendered in a short time. In spite of these assurances, the memorial remains unanswered.

On April 1, you assured me of the desire of the Colombian Government to settle the matter at an early date by negotiation, and in that connection suggested that the companies send a special representative to Bogota. In pursuance of this suggestion, a representative of the companies was sent to Bogota, and remained there over two months, but was not given an opportunity to carry on serious negotiations with the competent officials.

Needless to say, the continued delay in replying to the memorial mentioned is causing continued losses to the American interests concerned, who are not only prevented from proceeding with the development of the concession, but are unable to make plans for the future.

My Government earnestly desires to be informed what action the Colombian Government proposes to take in the matter.”12

Please verify and fill in proper dates in note. If Minister for Foreign Affairs is still away, make necessary changes. Leave copy of note with President and endeavor to convince him by an informal oral statement of the importance of having the memorial answered as soon as possible.

  1. In telegram No. 40, July 27, 6 p.m., p. 621, the Secretary of State instructed the Minister in Colombia to strike out the last two paragraphs of the note and to substitute quoted part contained in telegram 40.