740.00112 European War 1939/10958: Telegram

The Minister in Switzerland (Harrison) to the Secretary of State

3606. The following telegram has been sent to London.

954, June 6, noon.

Friendly official Division Commerce has told DCA and his British colleague that our letters of May 25 have been discussed by Swiss authorities but that Hotz52 has indicated he is in no hurry to reply or broach matter with us. (Sequence Legation’s 919, 3532 to Department June 2.) Official said that Swiss were rather disappointed that following December 19 agreement we did not make a gesture by opening some import quotas for raw materials. Although we had undertaken to examine import requirements of Swiss agriculture their [Page 728] consideration had not led to granting additional facilities. US and England were the powerful parties. Swiss had made concessions regarding undesirable exports in expectation of some gesture of reciprocity. If they made further reductions they would expect something more concrete in form of raw material import facilities than on last occasion. Official although more reserved than usual indicated that a counter offer something between Swiss proposals of March 23 and ours of May 1053 might be made to us.
CA and CS pointed out that Swiss had not only been given what was stipulated under December 19 agreement but had been allowed to carry over unused balances at end of quota period. Official agreed that latter was spontaneous gesture on our part and that if our offer of May 10 were accepted wholly counterpart would include opening up of new raw material quotas. He said he would talk to Hotz again about accelerating matters.
Attitude of Hotz may be intended to give impression of starting minor war of nerves. He is also inactive on question of iron imports (see British Legation’s Arfar 2052) about which CN and CS continue remind him at intervals.

Repeat[ed] to Department as Legation’s 3606.

  1. Jean Hotz, Director of the Division of Commerce, Swiss Department of Public Economy.
  2. See telegrams 2383, March 23, and 3854, May 11, from London, pp. 709 and 719, respectively.