The Minister in Portugal ( South ) to the Secretary of State

No. 105

Sir: Referring to my despatch No. 21 of April 11, 1930, and to previous correspondence on the general subject of flag discrimination and national treatment for foreign vessels in Portuguese ports, I have the honor to enclose herewith a copy and translation of a note from the Minister for Foreign Affairs, dated July 8, 1930, which is in reply to the Legation’s note No. 1065 of January 14 [10], 1930,—a copy of which was transmitted to the Department with the Legation’s despatch No. 2951 of the same date.

It may be encouraging to note that the Portuguese Government, through the Ministry of Marine, is now instituting a thorough investigation of the matter of shipping discrimination with a view to substituting another and more satisfactory system for the one now in effect, against which so much complaint has been made.

In acknowledging the receipt of the note under reference from the Minister for Foreign Affairs, I have taken the occasion again to stress our vital interest in securing better treatment for American [Page 785] vessels and to express the hope that the Portuguese Government may soon be able to reach a fair and just solution of this matter of shipping charges.

I have [etc.]

J. G. South

The Portuguese Minister for Foreign Affairs ( Branco ) to the American Minister ( South )

No. 78/27

Mr. Minister: I have given the greatest attention to note No. 1065 which you were good enough to address to me on January 10, last.

In reply, I have the honor to inform Your Excellency that the Ministry of Marine, by order of the Government of which I form a part, is instituting a detailed investigation, through the customs and other departments on the continent, and in the adjacent islands and colonies, on the subject of the system of differentials that affects foreign vessels.

In addition to the simplification of the maritime charges, which that study cannot fail to promote, it has the essential purpose of considering the substitution for the present protectionist system of another or others, in which the Government of the Republic will not fail to take into due consideration such of the representations made by Your Excellency on behalf of the interests of the shipowners of your country as may be consistent with the necessary development of the Portuguese merchant marine.

I avail myself [etc.]

Fernando Augusto Branco
  1. File translation revised.