551.5F1/157: Telegram

The Minister in Switzerland ( Wilson ) to the Secretary of State


128. The Disarmament Conference will shortly take place57 and there are many other problems of importance to be solved. These may make it necessary to hold another conference in the near future. Consequently, the League of Nations does not wish to commit itself on a silver conference until the immediate outlook is brighter, or, at any rate, until it is possible to determine more exactly the chances of its success. Davis is of the opinion, however, that the Financial Commission will agree to study the problem.

Davis has received reliable information to the effect that if the producing states can agree on restricting the production of silver, or on restricting its sale in the market, it will not be difficult to persuade India to negotiate the matter and to agree on an arrangement satisfactory to everybody.

What follows is the text of a resolution which we may be able to secure at present:58

“In various ways attached in many quarters to the problem arising from the recent rapid decline in the price of silver, the Council decides, subject to adequate budgetary provision being voted by the Assembly, to instruct the Financial Committee after taking cognizance of the report of the committee recently set up by the International Chamber of Commerce to make an inquiry into the effects of the recent rapid decline in the price of silver upon the economic life of silver-using countries, and also upon international trade and commerce, and to consider by what action, if any, the ill effects may be mitigated.”

I would appreciate being informed as to whether, with conditions as they are, you wish us to drop the matter, or whether you think it of advantage to have the above resolution passed if that can be arranged.

  1. See pp. 471 ff.
  2. Quoted passage not paraphrased.