550.S1 Wash./639

Memorandum by the Chief of the Division of Latin American Affairs (Wilson)

Fourth Meeting With the Brazilian Delegation, Tuesday Morning, May 23, 11 a.m.33

The entire Brazilian delegation was present. Messrs. Feis, E. C. Wilson, Manning, Merrill, Jones and Corliss attended. The Secretary came in for part of the meeting. Governor Cox came in for a moment and met the Brazilians.

Discussion of the exchange situation was resumed. Dr. Brasil said he had received instructions from his Government in the matter. He felt the statement submitted to him at the meeting on May 19 seemed to imply that the Brazilian Government had not given fair treatment to American interests in the past, and his Government of course took the position that it had always given fair treatment.…

. . . . . . . . . . . . . .

… Finally, agreement was reached on the following statement, which Dr. Brasil requested that the State Department make public:34

“In the course of the conversations with the Secretary of State regarding policies to be pursued at the Monetary and Economic Conference, the Brazilian mission takes the opportunity to make the declaration that it feels there is a strong identity of purpose and policy between the two Governments.

[Page 49]

“The Brazilian mission takes the further opportunity to declare that the Brazilian Government assures and will always assure all American interests completely fair treatment in connection with the service of loans and the disposition of exchange under the exchange control. It will in no way discriminate between different nations.

Dr. Numa de Oliveira then said that the delegation was authorized to deliver a confidential message to the Secretary of State to the effect that the Brazilian Government was so certain that no discrimination existed regarding allotment of exchange to American interests that the Government would allow the American diplomatic representative to go into the records of the Bank of Brazil to satisfy himself in the matter. The Brazilian delegation presented the text of a confidential message reading as follows:

“The Brazilian Government is so convinced that there was no discrimination at all in the supply of exchange detrimental to the American interests in Brazil that the Brazilian Government is prepared to accord the American diplomatic representative in Brazil the privilege of satisfying himself of this fact from the records of the Bank of Brazil.”

Dr. Feis stated that this was most satisfactory and he felt would furnish a means of conclusively satisfying all concerned that fair treatment was being accorded.

At this point the Secretary came in and was informed of the statement and confidential message made by the Brazilians. He expressed his appreciation of their attitude in the matter.

After the Secretary withdrew Dr. Feis completed the discussion begun at the last meeting of the economic questions to be dealt with at the London Conference.

At the close of the discussions Dr. Brasil inquired whether it would be possible for the Secretary of State to give him some confidential message which he could cable to his Government giving the Secretary’s views on the proposed coffee tax. It was agreed that we would put the matter before the Secretary and would advise Dr. Brasil later.

It should be added that in the discussion of the exchange questions Mr. Wilson referred again to the figure of six million pounds which Dr. Numa had stated would be sufficient to pay off all frozen commercial credits in Brazil, and inquired if the Brazilian calculation was made on the basis of the present official rate of exchange. Dr. Numa stated that this was so.

The field of the discussions concerning the London Conference and problems of Brazilian-American trade having been covered, no further arrangements for meetings were made.

Edwin C. Wilson

Subsequently the Secretary signed a letter to Dr. Brasil reading as follows: [Page 50]

“In reply to your inquiry on the subject of reports of a proposed coffee tax, I may say to you in confidence that I believe such a tax inadvisable and very much hope from the point of view of our foreign relations that it will not be enacted.”

  1. For report of the third meeting with the Brazilian Delegation, see vol. i, p. 514.
  2. Released May 23; see Department of State, Press Releases, May 27, 1933, p. 385.