811.516 Export Import Bank/9–345

The Secretary of State to the Foreign Economic Administrator ( Crowley )

My Dear Mr. Crowley: The present great expansion in the activities of the Export-Import Bank emphasizes the importance of relating its program to the framework of the foreign policy of the United States as laid down by the President and the Department of State.

The relations between the Department and the Bank have always been close, and we have participated in every step of formulation of major loan policy and negotiation of credits with particular foreign countries. We have, of course, not wished to be too closely involved in detailed operations. The importance to foreign policy of foreign lending by this Government has been recognized in our position on the old Board of Trustees, of which for many years an official of the Department was Chairman, and recently in our inclusion on the smaller new Board.

I am sure you will agree that the Bank should continue to work out its broad arrangements with individual countries in the closest collaboration with the Department and with reference to the various foreign policy considerations present in individual cases. In view of the increasing magnitude and importance of the Bank’s credit operations, I also ask that preliminary and general negotiations be undertaken, as has ordinarily been the case in the past, with full participation of representatives of the Department.

This participation is especially important now as we are embarking on negotiations with respect to commercial policy, cartels, commodity policy, and the position of American private trade and investment in [Page 1403] all parts of the world. It is essential that financial aid for reconstruction go hand in hand with the creation of commercial conditions which will permit repayment by the stimulation of international trade so necessary to the prosperity of America’s expanded industrial potential.

Sincerely yours,

James F. Byrnes
  1. Drafted September 3, 1945.