839.154/127: Airgram

The Secretary of State to the Minister in the Dominican Republic (Warren)

A–109. Your airgram A–136, October 20. The plan for highway rehabilitation and construction avoids financial outlay on the part of the Dominican Treasury.

(1) Paragraph 4 (a) of the draft agreement, referring to raw materials such as clay, sand, gravel, stone and timber involves no expenditure but merely the granting of the free use of these materials which are to be found in the river beds and in the terrain along the route of the highway, and likely to be a part of the public domain. Any labor and transportation costs involved in handling these materials would be part of the cost of the project borne by the United States.

The Dominican Government would be expected to make such materials freely available when found on the public domain and to lend its assistance in making them available if found on private property. [Page 274]The Governments of the other American Republics that have participated in cooperative highway projects have been quite willing to enter into such agreements.

(2) With regard to the clause in Paragraph 4 (b) regarding the use of equipment, reference is made to the Legation’s despatch no. 1015 of April 9, 19428 and other correspondence concerning the credit of $300,000 granted by the Export-Import Bank of Washington for the purchase of rolling stock and equipment for the Dominican Department of Public Works. Another credit of $100,000 was created for the purchasing of tractors and farm equipment for the Dominican Department of Agriculture. The Department is informed that approximately $200,000 was drawn by the Dominican Government on these two credits during June and July, 1942. Please inform the Department of the amount of machinery and equipment which has now reached the Dominican Republic or which is expected to arrive in the immediate future.

You may already have noted that Paragraph 4 (b) is reasonably flexible as it stipulates that there should be supplied for use on the project “such of the equipment owned by the Government of the Dominican Republic as it may be possible to make available for this work.” The contribution of the Dominican Government would be to allow the use of equipment already owned by it. Part of this project is the improvement and maintenance of an existing highway from San Pedro de Macorís to Elías Piña. Since in any case, it is assumed that a budgetary allowance is made by the Dominican Government for that work, it appears that this sum could be applied to any expenses incurred under Paragraph 4 and that no undue dislocation of the Dominican budget would result. In view of manufacturing and shipping difficulties the Public Roads Administration has indicated its intention to use as little heavy equipment and machinery as possible.

Will you please discuss these points with the appropriate Government officials and inform the Department by airgram of the results of your conversations?

  1. Not printed.