Memorandum by the Chief of the Division of Trade Agreements (Hawkins)

Mr. Sayre today handed to Don Marcello del Drago25 the attached memorandum26 in response to the question raised by the Italian Embassy concerning the status of Italo-American commercial relations in the interval between the signing and the coming into force of the new treaty of commerce and navigation. In the course of the discussion, Mr. Sayre emphasized the hope that the new treaty could be signed before the old one lapses, and that pending the coming into force of the new treaty the Italian Government would be in a position to apply the provisions for non-discriminatory treatment and thus make it possible for the United States to continue to extend to Italy the benefit of our trade-agreement rates. Don Marcello del Drago inquired as to the prospects of signing the new treaty before the old one lapses and was informed by Mr. Sayre that we will do everything we can to expedite the negotiations, but that, whether the agreement can be concluded in the time indicated, depends on whether Italy will find it possible to agree to the provisions which we consider indispensable.

  1. First Secretary of the Italian Embassy.
  2. Not printed.