825.85/165: Telegram

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

705. Reference my 663, April 8, 4 p.m. Carlos Vial called on Butrick today and referred to conversations between Rockefeller55 and Subercaseaux.56 Vial apparently anxious to sell the three ships and thinks it can be done but must be handled carefully. He suggests discussion with Subercaseaux be continued for another week, after which Subercaseaux can come to Chile with a definite plan for presentation to Chilean Government. Vial suggests Subercaseaux be accompanied by an official of Maritime Commission with full powers to conclude deal here. Vial emphasizes that nothing herein should be attributed to him. He also states plan of purchase must be backed up by exposition showing that no harm to Chile will result and that there will be no attempt to replace Chilean prestige on the sea by other flag vessels; further that guarantee should be given that no Grace Line or other American passenger vessel will take up run of Chilean passenger vessels to be sold. He suggests possibility of a Chilean passenger service to Panama with remaining vessels of Chilean Line.

  1. Nelson Rockefeller, Coordinator of Inter-American Affairs and member of the Board of Economic Warfare.
  2. Francisco Subercaseaux, general manager of Cia. Sud Americana de Vapores.