Memorandum of Conversation, by the Assistant Chief of the Division of Trade Agreements (Deimel)

Participants: Dr. João Antonio de Bianchi, Portuguese Minister
Assistant Secretary Sayre
Mr. Culbertson, Eu6
Mr. Deimel, TA7

Dr. Bianchi called by appointment to discuss the prospects for trade-agreement negotiations between the United States and Portugal. He said that he had been back home and had raised the question there in the hope of getting a proposal to present to us, but that his Government had, instead, authorized him to prepare and present a proposal to us. He said further that the question of shipping discriminations, which had previously been a stumbling block, could be settled in the agreement since the Portuguese Government realized that, owing to the nature of our alcoholic beverage controls, we would not be in a position to restrict the use of port to Portuguese wine. He said further that since Portugal had no exchange control and practically no quotas there would be no difficulty about the general provisions.

Mr. Sayre said we would be very much interested in proceeding to explore with him the possibilities of trade-agreement negotiations, and suggested that he might wish to submit a copy of our standard general provisions8 to his Government to make sure we could negotiate [Page 661]on that basis. Dr. Bianchi said he did not feel that was necessary and that he would like to get started with some informal discussions as to lists of products, since he was convinced that there would be no difficulty regarding the basis for agreement, his Government being aware of our policy as expressed in previous trade agreements. Mr. Sayre outlined briefly the nature of our procedure, and suggested to Dr. Bianchi the desirability of his conducting further preliminary explorations with Mr. Hawkins or whoever Mr. Hawkins might designate for the purpose in the Division of Trade Agreements.

This was agreeable to Dr. Bianchi and it was, accordingly, arranged that the subject would be briefly reviewed in the Division of Trade Agreements and an appointment made with Dr. Bianchi in a day or two to come down to the Division and discuss the matter further.

  1. Division of European Affairs.
  2. Division of Trade Agreements.
  3. For text of original standard general provisions, see Foreign Relations, 1935, vol. i, p. 541. Minor changes in these standard provisions were made from time to time.