665.116/216: Telegram

The Acting Secretary of State to the Chargé in Italy (Kirk)

72. Your 180, August 23, 8 p.m. The establishment of quotas as such affords no basis for representation. If quotas are established we seek and expect a fair share of each quota. The American share of any global quota should be proportionately the same as the share of trade in the commodity in question enjoyed by the United States during a prior representative period of unrestricted trade. That is, if the United States supplied say 25% of total imports into Italy during a representative period of unrestricted trade, then the American share of the global quota established should be 25%. We ask that a uniform period be established for all commodities unless it appears that in the case of particular commodities the period chosen would not in fact be truly representative. The arbitrary choice of any period for any commodity leaves the door open for discrimination. Unfavorable years might consistently be chosen for American products in order to throw advantages to third countries. A fixed representative period removes that hazard. You should endeavor to obtain recognition from the Italian Government of the two foregoing points. I might add that we do not expect to have to bargain for the allotment to us of America’s fair share of each quota.

Please continue your efforts on behalf of those commodities, the quotas on which have been exhausted.