811.504 Mexico/1–1345

The Secretary of State to the Ambassador in Mexico (Messersmith)

No. 6914

Sir: Reference is made to the agreement of April 29, 1943 for the recruiting of nonagricultural workers in Mexico, under which the Mexican Government has given permission for the maintaining of 50,000 railroad maintenance-of-way employees in the United States.

There is now attached for your information a copy of a letter of January 13, 1945 from the War Manpower Commission,43 in which it is requested that the Mexican Government be asked to raise this quota for railroad workers from 50,000 to 75,000 workers. The War Manpower Commission gives as a reason for this request that reports from the railroad industry reveal a present shortage of 90,000 maintenance-of-way workers. It is further stated that the Commission has been urged to give immediate consideration to the requirements of twenty-two carriers for more than 17,000 workers in addition to those assigned under the existing 50,000 quota.

You are therefore authorized, in your discretion, to present this request to the Mexican Government with a view to securing, if possible, the desired permission.44 As indicated in the communication from the War Manpower Commission, this matter has been discussed with Lic. Luis Padilla Nervo, Oficial Mayor of the Mexican Ministry of Labor, who is presently in this capital, and Mr. Padilla Nervo raised no objections to this request but indicated that it would of course have to be considered by the Mexican Government in the light of the latest statistics regarding the labor supply in Mexico.

In presenting this request, you may wish to have in mind that the War Manpower Commission has renewed its request for 25,000 forge, foundry, and other heavy industry workers, who were the subject of communications between the Department and the Embassy several months ago.45 The War Department has also recently again urged the Department to expedite this matter in every way possible because of the need for these workers in war plants. In a separate instruction46 you are being asked to renew the request of this Government for these heavy industry workers, and a newly revised proposed individual work agreement is being forwarded to you47 for clearance [Page 1142] with the Mexican Government. The revisions have been made in consultation with Mr. Padilla Nervo.

Very truly yours,

For the Secretary of State:
Nelson Rockefeller
  1. Not printed.
  2. Ambassador Messersmith made this request in Note No. 3531, January 29, 1945, to the Mexican Foreign Office; the Minister for Foreign Affairs, Ezequiel Padilla, approved the 25,000 worker increase in his answering note No. 3133, February 17, 1945; neither printed.
  3. See instruction 6696, December 11, 1944, to Mexico, Foreign Relations, 1944, vol. vii, p. 1334.
  4. Instruction 6921, January 26, 1945, not printed.
  5. Enclosed in instruction 6921, January 26, 1945, not printed. This proposed agreement, although approved with reservations by the Mexican Ministry of Labor in April 1945, was not consummated.