The Secretary of State to the Chargé in Guatemala ( O’Donoghue )38

No. 238

Sir: A copy of your despatch dated October 4, 1935,39 reporting the acceptance by the Government to which you are accredited of the proffered cooperation of this Government in the construction of a specified bridge on the route of the Inter-American Highway, was, on its receipt, promptly forwarded to the Bureau of Public Roads of the Department of Agriculture; and, as you were authorized in the Department’s instruction of September 3, 1935, and an enclosure therewith, to say would be done, the necessary steps are now being taken to carry out the proposed bridge construction.

Since, when constructed, the bridge is to become the property of the Government of Guatemala, it is assumed that the materials, equipment and supplies to be used by this Government’s representatives in its construction will be accorded, on entry into and in transit through the territory of that country, treatment no less favorable than that which is accorded to articles already belonging to the Government of the country. However, prior to the beginning of their shipment, assurance is desired regarding the treatment which will be accorded to such materials, equipment and supplies.

For example, assurance is desired that they will be exempted from the payment of customs duties, from all wharfage or lighterage charges and any other similar charges while on Government-owned wharfs or lighters, from any transit charges, national, provincial or municipal, should such charges exist, and from the payment of any freight charges when shipped on railroads or other carriers owned or operated by the Government. When the articles referred to are on [Page 265] privately-owned wharfs, lighters or railways or other carriers, assurance is desired that only such charges will have to be paid as are paid on property handled for the Government.

In requesting the foregoing assurances, you are authorized to give assurance to the appropriate authorities that all such materials, equipment and supplies will be so marked that their destination and use will be easily recognizable and that none of them will be sold in the country but that when the work is finished all such articles not consumed in the construction of the bridge will either be presented to the Government or taken out of the country.

Assurance is also desired that all gasoline, oils, and greases for use in automobiles, trucks, hoists, powershovels and any other such equipment employed in work on the bridge, or other cooperative work on the highway, may be purchased at Government rates.

A similar instruction is being addressed to the diplomatic missions of this Government in the other interested countries which have indicated their acceptance of this Government’s proffered cooperation in the bridge construction program on the route of the Inter-American Highway.

Very truly yours,

For the Secretary of State:
Wilbur J. Carr
  1. A similar instruction was sent on the same date to the Minister in Honduras (No. 37) and the Chargé in Panama (No. 97). Satisfactory replies were made by Guatemala, December 5 (810.154/845, 850); Honduras, November 22 (810.154/843); and Panama, November 25 (810.154/844, 848).
  2. Not printed.