740.00112 European War 1939/7290: Telegram

The Secretary of State to the Ambassador in the United Kingdom ( Winant )

6112. Your 6596, November 26 [23] and other telegrams regarding Swedish trade negotiations.

In accordance with directions of the President, Boheman has been informed (a) that the United States agrees in principle to the increase of the Swedish oil quota to 30,000 tons quarterly and that two Swedish tankers (Sveadrott and Saturnus) will be permitted to depart immediately with cargoes to be applied against the new quota for the first quarter of 1943. These two oil cargoes are to be reserved solely for Swedish military use although if practicable the United States will agree to the use of some of these supplies for the planes flying between Sweden and Scotland and to replace certain oil which has been withdrawn from Swedish naval reserves for use on the Swedish-Greek relief ships; (b) that we reserve all rights in regard to the two Norwegian ships now at Goteborg; that while no action looking to the departure of these vessels from Goteborg will be taken until after the two tankers had arrived in Sweden we give fair warning that this issue might be raised at any time after the arrival of the tankers and that if our expectation that Sweden would permit the departure of the two Norwegian vessels when demand therefor was made was not fulfilled a most serious situation would arise and all obligations might be discontinued by us; (c) that the War Shipping Administration desired to press on with the negotiations for the charter of the free Swedish ships now operating in the Western Hemisphere (for your information the charter question seems now to be started toward a satisfactory solution and though Boheman stated that it will be necessary to bring a representative of the Swedish shipowners into the negotiations he agrees that the Swedish and American Governments now seem to be in agreement in principle that at least some of these ships are to be time chartered to the WSA); (d) that the negotiations on other questions such as basic rations for Sweden, iron ore shipments to Germany, German troop transits, Swedish credits to Germany, et cetera, are to be pressed on with as soon as possible. In this connection we have made tentative plans to send BEW representatives to Stockholm as soon as possible after Boheman arrives there to work out further details of the agreement. We understand that MEW representatives will go to Stockholm at the same time.
British Embassy, Washington, has agreed to the foregoing and discussions are under way with Boheman looking toward the substantial [Page 367] implementation of the President’s directive including the immediate clearance of the two Swedish tankers.
Boheman states that he is unable to commit his Government on any of the concessions we desire but must return to Stockholm to report. Urgent air transportation for his return via Great Britain is being arranged.
Copies of pertinent documents are being sent you by air mail.