811.20 Defense (M)/6245: Telegram

The Ambassador in Panama (Wilson) to the Secretary of State

332. Your 249 of April 10. Minister of Foreign Affairs replies that price of 35 cents per pound in New York offered by Rubber Reserve is not sufficient to stimulate the production and gathering of rubber in this country but that price of 40 cents per pound in Panama would stimulate production and extraction.

Luedtke80 and Seeley81 have looked into the question of costs in getting rubber out under present conditions but find it practically impossible to establish as there has been no rubber gathering in Panama for more than 20 years and no data available regarding costs. Owners of old and abandoned rubber plantations of which there are a number say they are willing to undertake extraction but do not want to lose money.

And in considering statement in Department’s instruction number 249 that price offered to Panama is the same as that made to other producing countries for same type of rubber and Luedtke and Seeley feel that in view of the high wage scale and scarcity of labor in Panama some additional inducement will have to be made if rubber extraction in Panama is to be stimulated.

  1. Charles L. Luedtke, Agricultural Attach, Costa Rica.
  2. George L. Seeley, rubber expert, Office of the Coordinator of Inter-American Affairs.