825.6363/315a: Airgram

The Secretary of State to the Ambassador in Chile (Bowers)

A−559. It has been brought to the Department’s attention that Argentina took approximately 3,000 tons of nitrate from Chile during the month of January. This represents a consumption of about 450 tons of fuel oil supplied to Chile by the petroleum pool44 for the production of nitrate. If Argentina should continue to take nitrate from Chile at this rate for the entire year, it would mean that the pool during that period would be laying down over 5,000 tons of fuel oil in Chile for the production of nitrate for Argentina.

Unless you perceive objection, please bring the foregoing to the attention of the appropriate Chilean officials and discuss the matter with them along the following lines: we feel that the pool cannot be called upon to continue to supply oil at this rate for this purpose, and accordingly suggest that the Chilean authorities may wish to raise the question with the Argentine Government with a view to having [Page 863] Argentina supply the oil necessary for the production of such nitrate as Argentina purchases from Chile.

  1. Petroleum Supply Committee for Latin America, New York.