611.6731/647: Telegram

The Ambassador in Turkey (MacMurray) to the Secretary of State

159. Department’s 58, December 8, 6 p.m., paragraph 2. The principal currencies in addition to the dollar considered by the Turkish Central Bank to be free currencies are those of England, France, [Page 888] Switzerland, the Netherlands and Sweden. The Embassy understands that regulations are now being worked out relative to the purchase of these currencies at new rates presumably corresponding to the new dollar rate inasmuch as trade with the countries in question does not involve in general the purchase in Turkey of the respective foreign currency. The purchase of these currencies is restricted principally to sale by tourists and other travelers.

The Turkish Government has now placed on a compensation basis trade with Egypt, Palestine, Syria, Cyprus, and Malta. These were the only countries in addition to the United States with which trade has been hitherto conducted on a free exchange basis.