The First Secretary of Embassy in China ( Smyth ) to the Secretary of State
[Received February 21—12:58 p.m.]
66. Peiping’s 13, January 7, 3 p.m.1a Universal Leaf Tobacco Company. The Japanese Embassy here informed this Embassy yesterday in writing that the Universal Leaf Tobacco Company had been authorized as of February 20 to purchase Shantung leaf tobacco at following [Page 782] places west of Weihsien: Tanchiafang, Yangchiachuang and Hsintien. It is understood that although the company’s allotment for purchase has not been increased the Japanese authorities might give favorable consideration to a request for an increase after the present allotment has been exhausted.
The Embassy learns that the Yee Tsoong Tobacco Company has likewise been authorized to purchase west of Weihsien.
The above concessions may have come too late in the season to be of any practical benefit. It has been reliably reported that the Shantung tobacco crop this year although of better than average quality is only two-thirds of normal.
Sent to the Department, repeated to Chungking, Shanghai and Tsingtao, by air mail to Tokyo.