740.00119 Control (Germany)/9–1046: Telegram

The United States Political Adviser for Germany (Murphy) to the Secretary of State


2120. Mytel 2098, September 8.14 76th Extraordinary Session of Coordinating Committee September 9 noted agreed report by Experts Committee on coal production as well as special minutes on disagreed points.15 Both documents will be submitted to ACC September 10 for transmission to CFM. Zone Commanders will be invited to give effect to agreed recommendations and to furnish monthly reports on their actions to ACC. Coal Experts Committee reports will also be referred to Economic Manpower and Finance Directorates for continued study of measures to increase production.

Owing to divergence between US, British and French views on one hand and Soviet on other regarding coal availabilities in relation to internal needs and Potsdam principles of creating Germany as economic whole no agreement was reached on allocations. In reply to question by Clay, Soviet member on Coordinating Committee stated his delegation had not refused to make coal available for quadripartite allocation and he suggested Experts Committee meet again to resolve this point. This was agreed and supplementary report will be forwarded to ACC and CFM when completed. At Clay’s request Economic Directorate will attempt concurrently a clearer definition of “needs of occupying forces”. (Clay’s intention is to endeavor to limit coal quantities which Soviet Zone can withhold from availability on grounds that they might be needed for general and probably very broad requirements of Soviet forces and military administration.)

Coordinating Committee agreed to await study of present preliminary report by CFM before instructing Experts Committee to proceed with second comprehensive report (mytel 1826 of July 30).

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Following is brief summary of agreed preliminary report which General Clay yesterday described as “disheartening”: Hard coal production is respectively 40% and 50% of prewar levels in British and French zones. There are only three-quarters of number of mine workers employed before war. Productivity per manshift is 60% in Ruhr and 70% in Saar of prewar levels. Absenteeism runs from 40% to 100% above 1938 figures. Recommendations are that zonal authorities combine other branches of economy to obtain essential mine workers. Incentives must be offered such as food, consumer goods, housing, increased wages, social insurance and special inducements. There should be better technical control and discipline including denazification measures, improvement of trade unions relationships, etc.

Following is summary of Special Experts Committee’s minutes on disagreed points consisting largely of 30 pages comments and rebuttal on British zone. In general Soviet and French representatives criticized “inadmissible backwardness” of Ruhr whereas British emphasized unique position as result of great war damage. French survey of their own zone was accepted without comment. Brief Soviet comment on US zone is that workers organizations are not sufficiently consulted, equipment is inadequate and production is based on mine-owners self-interest. Comments on Soviet zone by other representatives criticized equipment, maintenance, incomplete denazification, apparent 7-day work week.

Sent Department, repeated London as 318, Paris for Matthews as 275, Moscow as 263.

  1. Not printed; this telegram merely reported that discussion of coal was deferred from the 75th to the 76th meeting of the Coordinating Committee (740.00119 Control (Germany)/9–846).
  2. Neither printed.