561.333 D3/1–545: Airgram

The Secretary of State to the Ambassador in Brazil (Berle)

A–29. Details regarding the quota increases under the Inter-American Coffee Agreement2 referred to in a preceding circular telegram3 are as follows:

The Inter-American Coffee Board at its January 2 meeting approved a resolution combining in one emergency increase in the quotas under Article VIII of the Coffee Agreement the two quota adjustments authorized by the Board in its meeting of December 28, 1944. The resolution of December 28 increased the quotas to 200 percent of the basic quotas effective January 1, 1945 but provided for a reduction in the quotas to 125 percent of the basic quotas as of April 1. Under that resolution it would have been possible for coffee to have been entered for consumption into the United States from one or more countries prior to April 1, 1945 in a quantity exceeding the quotas which would have been in effect beginning with April 1. In adopting the resolution the Board was aware of this possibility but approved it with the understanding that provision could be made in any of a number of ways for handling such excess coffee, if the problem should arise. By permitting the resolution to be adopted in this form it was possible to obtain support for the resolution from a number of delegates who would not otherwise have voted for it.

In the January 2 meeting it was decided, however, that combining the two alterations into one adjustment, effective January 3, 1945, would simplify the resolution, and obviate the necessity of making provision for such excess coffee after it may have entered this country. If further increases in the quotas are needed to facilitate supplying United States requirements, they can, of course, be made.

It is realized that the coffee quota increase may not have any appreciable effect on the quantity of coffee sold to the United States. [Page 352] The primary purpose is to make it perfectly clear that the quotas are not responsible for our supply difficulties.

This message is being sent to AmEmbassy, Bogotá, San José, Habana, Ciudad Trujillo, Quito, San Salvador, Guatemala, Port-au-Prince, Tegucigalpa, Mexico, D.F., Managua, Lima, and Caracas.

  1. Signed November 28, 1940: for text, see Department of State Treaty Series No. 970, or 55 Stat. (pt. 2) 1143. For documentation, see Foreign Relations, 1940, vol. v, pp. 380 ff.
  2. Not printed