800.6176/490a: Telegram

The Secretary of State to the Ambassador in the United Kingdom ( Winant )

3608. Rubber industry meeting of May 2 inconclusive. Industry agrees with Department on general desirability of post-war collaboration and discussion with other governments of problems of mutual interest. Industry representatives, however, reiterated opinion that formal participation in an international rubber agreement was premature. Department believes this view based upon feeling by industrial representatives that they have not been taken fully into confidence of Department plus some trepidation regarding motives behind invitation for United States participation in new agreement. In order partially to dispel apprehension on first point, Department is formally establishing rubber panel composed of industry representatives and government officials to serve in a consultative capacity to Department.

The following program is tentatively envisaged:

Prepare agenda of probable post-war problem areas with respect to rubber and rubber substitutes;
Schedule industry meeting within 3 weeks to discuss items on agenda;
Department representatives accompanied by one or more industry advisers to come to London to have preliminary exploratory discussions [Page 967] with British and Dutch regarding problems with which proposed international committee should grapple;
Schedule meeting with United States rubber panel to discuss desirability of United States participation in new international rubber agreement in the light of discussions mentioned in 3 above.

Department believes this program might dispel industry hesitation and eventually culminate in United States participation in new agreement since it will indicate to industry that Department is cooperating and intends to rely on industry for advice and will give British and Dutch an opportunity to convince United States rubber industry of mutual advantages to be gained from international discussion of prospective problems.

Mr. Jopson of British Embassy in Washington fully informed on all points.