868.51/1602: Telegram

The Secretary of State to the Minister in Greece (MacVeagh)

165. Your 170, July 12, 6 p.m. Please inform the Foreign Minister, in a formal communication, that the United States Government has noted with satisfaction the Greek Government’s assurance that it has no intention of treating the American Government loan of 1929 less [Page 616]favorably than the Stabilization and Refugee Loan of 1928. You should add that this Government cannot, however, regard as admissible the Greek Government’s claim that “economic difficulties” constitute an adequate reason for the failure of the Greek Government to accord in fact the equal treatment in this matter to which it admits the United States is entitled. Therefore, if the present assurance is to be taken seriously the Greek Government should give effect to it without further delay by making the payments past due and payable to this Government as set forth in the first two paragraphs of the Department’s 141, June 19, 5 p.m., and it should in the future so apportion its available financial resources for foreign debt service as to afford this Government the equal treatment to which it is warranted.

Please include in your written communication the statements you were authorized to make orally to the Greek Government in the penultimate paragraph of the Department’s 141. Greek exports to the United States during 1939 were valued at $22,359,000, while imports into Greece from the United States were valued at only $6,391,000 according to the reports of the United States Department of Commerce. Veterans’ payments to beneficiaries in Greece during the fiscal year ending June 30, 1939, amounted to $404,818. Figures for immigrant remittances and tourists’ expenditures are not available but were of course substantial.

You should point out that the American Government is at present studying its position with regard to the free flow of dollar exchange abroad and naturally considers all relevant circumstances in that connection.

Please press this matter vigorously and keep the Department currently informed by telegraph of developments.

Hull