835.6363/475: Telegram

The Ambassador in Argentina (Weddell) to the Secretary of State

225. My 221, October 14, 6 p.m. In conversation with the Minister for Foreign Affairs yesterday he said it was the policy of his Government [Page 199] that equality of treatment should prevail in negotiations with the oil companies. He was inclined to minimize practical effect of the municipal bylaw which he asserted originated with the Socialists in the Municipal Council.

Standard and Shell-Mex report they protested the bylaw on October 15 which takes effect October 21 unless vetoed. While the companies view this possibility with apprehension I am inclined to believe bylaw is more a threat on the part of the Government to force the oil companies to reach an agreement satisfactory to the YPF and like most Argentine controversial legislation is, as the oil companies admit and as the Minister intimated, very flexible and subject to almost any interpretation.

Dutch Minister informs me he is making, under instructions, declarations [to?] the Minister for Foreign Affairs similar to mine.