Mr. James A. Moffett 2 to President Roosevelt
My Dear Mr. President: Referring to the interview which you so kindly granted me on Wednesday, April 9th, and in line with your request, I am attaching hereto a memorandum covering the existing situation in Saudi Arabia. Also a proposal which we hope will be acceptable as a means of providing funds for the Saudi Arabian Government.
Our representatives have had numerous conferences with the King. His financial situation is desperate. The British Government has advanced him four hundred thousand pounds and he is endeavoring to have this increased to nine hundred thousand pounds. His budget requirement is conservatively estimated at $10,000,000.
You referred to the four Danish tank steamers which might be utilized to transport finished petroleum products. If the United States Government will advance to the King of Saudi Arabia $6,000,000 annually for the next five years, the Calarabian Standard Oil Company3 will agree to deliver to the United States Government, for account of the King:
|F. O. B. Ship Persian Gulf|
|1,800,00 bbls. of Gasoline||at 3½¢ [per gallon]|
|2,660,000 bbls. of Diesel Oil||at 75¢|
|3,400,000 bbls. of Fuel Oil||at 40¢|
totalling approximately $6,000,000 worth of petroleum products annually.
The King’s normal revenue (from pilgrimage and customs) has practically disappeared. His expenses have very materially increased, not only on account of the war, but due to the drought this past year, so that he has been forced to feed two or three hundred thousand of his subjects.
I sincerely trust that some way may be found under existing legislation to provide King Ibn Saud financial assistance, which he so urgently needs in order to maintain his government in a stable condition. We believe that unless this is done, and soon, this independent kingdom, and perhaps with it the entire Arab world, will be thrown into chaos.
Yours very sincerely,
- Chairman of the board of directors of the Bahrein Petroleum Co., Ltd. (incorporated in Canada) and of its subsidiary, the California Texas Oil Co., Ltd. (incorporated in the Bahamas). Mr. Moffett, at this time, was acting in the interests of the California Arabian Standard Oil Co. (incorporated in Delaware), which was developing an oil concession in Saudi Arabia. All of these aforementioned companies were jointly owned by Standard Oil Co. of California and the Texas Corp. (name of the latter company changed to the Texas Co. late in 1941).↩
- Abbreviation for the California Arabian Standard Oil Co.↩