882.635 Neep/9: Telegram
The Secretary of State to the Minister in Liberia ( Walton )
25. Personal for the Minister from McBride. Your 47, October 18, 10 a.m.
1. In years 1929 to 1936 base selling price of iron ore at Lake Erie docks ranged between $4.50 and $4.80 per gross ton depending upon grades. No accurate information available regarding selling prices of iron ore in foreign countries.[Page 846]
2. Proposed change in Article IV Section E, reducing to 150 the number of employees of foreign nationality which Neep may engage in Liberia, might appear still to leave to the concessionaire privileges which might be regarded as disproportionate to the proposed lease of 6500 acres. The Firestone Agreement, which applies to a potential lease of one million acres, provides for no more than 1500 foreign employees.
3. The purposes of the Liberian Government might perhaps be accomplished by adding some such provision as the following to Section I of Article IV:
“Neep agrees that at least 60 percent of its stock shall be retained at all times in Dutch or Liberian control, and that the members of its Board of Directors shall be Dutch or Liberian nationals.”
Similar restrictions were recently accepted by an American company when obtaining a concession in one of the countries of the Near East.57
4. Please keep me informed of any decision regarding the site of the proposed harbor basin.
5. These observations and suggestions, which you will appreciate are my own personal views, are offered for your consideration. [McBride.]