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

No. 942

Sir: I have the honor to refer to the Legation’s despatches no. 660 and no. 675 of September 23 and October 1, 1941, respectively,2 referring to the Dominican-Haitian Commercial Convention which was signed in Port-au-Prince August 26, 1941.3

The Dominican press on March 6 announced that ratifications of this convention will be exchanged in Ciudad Trujillo at 10 a.m. on March 23, 1942. The Department will recall that by the terms of the convention, it shall be effective from the date of the exchange of ratifications.

The Legation has noted the Department’s press release no. 76 of February 20, 19424 in which the exchange of notes between the American Minister at Port-au-Prince and the Haitian Minister for Foreign Affairs was announced. According to its terms the United States has agreed not to evoke [invoke?] the pertinent provisions of the trade agreement of March 28, 19355 for the purpose of claiming the benefit of reductions in customs duties which may be accorded by Haiti to the Dominican Republic in the Dominican-Haitian Convention. The Legation is aware that the Haitian imports upon which the Dominican Government has granted tariff concessions in the Dominican-Haitian Convention are of such nature there is little likelihood of any importations of importance of these articles from the [Page 361] United States into the Dominican Republic. However, in view of the probability that some importations of these products will be made from the United States, the Legation would appreciate the Department’s instructions as to the attitude which it should assume with reference to the unconditional most-favored-nation treatment to which the United States is entitled from the Dominican Republic as a result of the modus vivendi of September 25, 1924. It is to be assumed that American exporters and Dominican importers will request that they be granted the advantages of the Dominican-Haitian Convention with respect to the importations into this country of United States products on which the duty has been lowered by the present convention. On the other hand, it is to be expected that the Dominican Government will maintain that since the United States has not exercised its right as a most-favored-nation with Haiti with reference to this convention it should not exercise it with the Dominican Republic.

Respectfully yours,

For the Minister:
Halleck L. Rose

Second Secretary of Legation
  1. Neither printed.
  2. British and Foreign State Papers, vol. cxliv, p. 754.
  3. Department of State Bulletin, February 21, 1942, pp. 174–175; see also post, pp. 460 ff.
  4. For negotiations relating to the trade agreement between the United States and Haiti, see Foreign Relations, 1935, vol. iv, pp. 642 ff.; for text, see Department of State Executive Agreement Series No. 78, or 49 Stat. (pt. 2) 3737.