The Secretary of State to the Ambassador in Uruguay (Dawson)
569. Reference is made to your despatches and reports regarding the contemplated request of the Uruguayan Government for a loan from the Export-Import Bank for public works. Department has discussed this matter fully with Export-Import Bank and War Production Board and has reached the conclusion that it will be impossible to secure the materials (especially the iron and steel) required for the program as set out in your reports.40 Both the Department and the Export-Import Bank would be pleased to discuss with Uruguayan officials the revision of outstanding credits to Uruguay totalling $19,500,000 which have not as yet been utilized or the granting of additional credits. However, it should be made clear to Uruguayan officials that these conversations will have to be based upon the understanding that projects of the type contained in your report calling for large amounts of iron and steel from this country cannot be undertaken at this time due to the requirements of the war effort.
You should endeavor, if possible, to have the Uruguayans plan a public works program utilizing much less iron and steel and other [Page 723] scarce materials and have them request aid in financing such program formally through official channels.
The Department feels that little would be gained by sending a representative of the Bank to Uruguay as Uruguay has able engineers who could make any necessary reports and that sending someone would raise false hopes.
Please discuss this matter with appropriate Uruguayan officials and report to the Department.
- Reports giving details of program not printed.↩