The Ambassador in Turkey ( MacMurray ) to the Secretary of State
[Received July 19.]
Sir: In continuation of my despatch No. 1443 of May 6, 1940,37 relative to the exchange situation, I have the honor to report that I took up again with the Minister for Foreign Affairs on May 8, 1940, the question of the allocation of exchange for the payment of arrears due on imports from the United States, with particular reference to the statement in the Ministry’s note of April 24, 1940, that $1,755,071 were “in course of payment”. There is enclosed, for the Department’s records, a copy of the memorandum of my conversation with the Minister. I gained the impression that the Minister was genuinely surprised to learn that a large amount of the dollar exchange which had been allocated for the payment of imports from the United States had not been paid out.
In accordance with the Minister’s suggestion, Mr. Kelley38 called upon the Director General of the Department of Commercial and Economic Affairs on May 13, 1940, and explained the exchange situation fully to him. As of interest to the Department there is enclosed a copy of the memorandum which he left with Mr. Saman.
It would appear that following my representations, the Minister actively interested himself in the matter since, as will be seen from the table below, a very large amount of exchange has been made available since May 17 for the payment of imports from the United States.
|April 26–May 2||110,000|
|May 31–June 6||625,000|
It will be noted that whereas in the four weeks preceding May 17 the total amount of the exchange permits issued was $369,000, during the four weeks following that date exchange permits were issued to the amount of $1,736,000. Even though there be deducted from this latter amount the sum of $479,000, representing the value of the [Page 976] exchange permits returned by the Ford Motor Company, as explained in my despatch No. 1475 of May 31, 1940,39 the amount remaining exceeds the figure for the previous period by about $1,000,000. As a result of the large amount of exchange furnished since May 17, the arrears for imports from the United States effected prior to January 1, 1940, have been reduced to approximately $459,000 (as of June 14th). While the liquidation of the remaining arrears for pre-1940 imports may be delayed in consequence of recent international developments, the Embassy will continue to follow the matter closely with a view to expediting as much as possible the liquidation of these arrears.
I may add for the Department’s information that the Embassy has not as yet received any reply to its note of March 19, 1940, requesting the information specified by the Department in its telegram No. 19 of March 14, 3 p.m. The Embassy has endeavored to expedite the procurement of this information through both oral and written representations to the Foreign Office, which maintains that it has been doing its best to obtain the data desired from the appropriate Departments of the Turkish Government.