814.796 Latin American Airways/4: Telegram

The Minister in Guatemala ( Geissler ) to the Secretary of State

57. Hawks’ despatch 2370 and 2371.92 My telegram of May 2, 4 p.m.

The Latin American Air Transport Company has pending before the Assembly air mail contract granted by Fomento to carry mail between Mariscal, Mexico, and Guatemala.

Fomento has rejected Rihl93 applications for a concession for Compania Mexicana between Tapachula, Mexico, and Guatemala and for a concession to the Pan American Airways connecting with Miami-Panamá line. Rihl’s representative is still negotiating.

Latin American and Rihl each fighting the other’s projects. There is much opposition all three projects. It is doubtful that any one of them will be approved by the Assembly adjourning this month.

Compañía Mexicana and Latin American propose operating under Mexican charters in Guatemala and then in the other Central American countries.

I perceive no sound reason for our helping secure transport concessions for Mexican companies even though at present controlled by American stockholders. I believe that the psychological effect of the operation of air transport by a foreign corporation other than the United States would be bad.

Since the Compania Mexicana was mentioned in the Department’s telegram of April 18 [19], 1 p.m.,94 and is represented by Rihl, the Legation has felt that perhaps the Department may not want it to discriminate against Mexican companies said to be controlled by Americans.

Does the Department desire the Legation to offer to help the Pan American Airways actively even though that might mean the elimination of both of the Mexican companies? If so please cable soon as time is getting very short.

[Page 638]

Pan American efforts would be more promising of success if Rihl had an American as his local representative instead of a German.

  1. Neither printed.
  2. George L. Rihl, president of the Compañía Mexicana de Aviación and vice president of the Pan American Airways, Inc.
  3. Ante, p. 557.