The Ambassador in Argentina (Weddell) to the Secretary of State
[Received July 8.]
Sir: I have the honor to refer, amongst other correspondence, to the Embassy’s despatch No. 711 of May 16, 1935, reporting an interview Mr. Cox and Dr. Dye, the Embassy’s Commercial Attaché, had with Dr. Pinedo, the Argentine Minister of Finance, on the subject of the surcharge up to twenty per cent, on goods entering Argentina without prior permit. The upshot of this conversation was that Dr. Pinedo agreed to a meeting between Dr. Gagneux, head of the Exchange Control Office, and Dr. Dye, to reconsider the question of the value of Argentine exports to the United States, the dollar f. o. b. values of which since January 1, 1935, as declared before the American Consul General, are far in excess of the amounts credited by the Statistical Bureau here.
Several times since that occasion efforts have been made with Dr. Gagneux to obtain a definite appointment for this discussion but without success, various excuses being offered that the Ministry of Finance was preoccupied with a study of these figures, with the organization of the Central Bank, and lastly, with the Senate debate on the operation of the meat-packing houses with which the Exchange Control Office has become involved.
However, Mr. Lansing Wilcox, President of the United States Chamber of Commerce in Argentina, saw the Minister of Finance on this subject. I enclose a copy of a memorandum12 of his conversation with Dr. Pinedo, in which, the Department will note, the Minister intimated that better treatment might be accorded American goods if the figures of recent Argentine exports to the United States as declared before the Consul General were found to be correct.
Accordingly, I instructed Dr. Dye actively to press Dr. Pinedo for the appointment agreed to, to ascertain the cause of the discrepancy between the statistics of Argentine exports to the United States with a view to receiving more liberal treatment for United States goods entering this country. As a matter of record, I enclose a copy of Dr. Dye’s letter to Dr. Pinedo, dated June 25,12 together with English translation.