611.526 Wines/23

Memorandum by the Assistant Secretary of State (Welles)

The Ambassador of Spain called this morning. He referred specifically to the question of the wine quota for Spain. He referred with some discouragement to the failure so far to reach any agreement and said that of his own initiative he would like to make the following suggestion:

That this Government fix a quota of 400,000 gallons for Spain, Spain in return to agree to purchase a fixed quantity of American tobacco during the two and a half months period prior to May first. The Ambassador particularly stressed the fact that the Government Tabacalera could not announce in advance its program for the entire twelve months period as suggested here in view of the fact that its program is likely to change at the expiration of every three months. As an additional argument in favor of our viewing his suggestion sympathetically the Ambassador stressed the fact that considerable quantities of Spanish wine had been imported under the British quota and that this necessarily should be taken into account in fixing a total quota for Spain.

I told the Ambassador who was anxious to have as speedy a reply as possible to his suggestion, that the Department would let him know at the earliest possible moment what could be done in accordance with his expressed desire.

S[umner] W[elles]