The Bulgarian Political Representative (Stoichev) to the Assistant Secretary of State for Economic Affairs (Clayton)

Dear Mr. Clayton: During my 8 months’ stay in America, I have been employing my efforts, among other things, to facilitate commercial exchange between the United States and Bulgaria. In this my endeavor I have found full understanding and collaboration on the part of the Department of State as well as on the part of the Department of Commerce, which I appreciate very much.

As a result of our common work a certain amount of commercial exchange between the two countries has been attained. Unfortunately, its national economy being badly shattered by the war, Bulgaria does not dispose of much export surpluses. On the other hand, our country needs urgently a series of manufactured goods and raw materials in order to restore the country’s productive resources. Therefore the Bulgarian Government considers that if commercial credits were granted to Bulgaria, it would facilitate greatly Bulgarian purchases in this country. It is the opinion of my Government that if credits amounting to about $10,000,000. were opened by the Export-Import Bank, they could be repaid through Bulgarian exports of tobacco to the United States in 6 or 7 years, even if annual tobacco imports remained at the prewar years’ level. But I am quite confident that Bulgarian imports of tobacco in the U.S.A. will be considerably higher in coming years and that on the other hand, many other Bulgarian products which will be available for export as soon Bulgarian economy gets on its feet again, such as rose oil, medicinal plants, essential oils, vegetable oils and many others, will find a live interest among American merchants, and so the gradually expanding Bulgarian exports will undoubtedly secure the dollar balances necessary for the reimbursement of the credits even in shorter time.

In case there are no obstacles in principle in the way of granting such [Page 103] credits, I should like to know more specifically what kind of information it would be necessary for my Government to provide and if a plan is to be offered as to how the credits would be used, what elements should it contain.

As I shall go to Bulgaria on a short leave in the first days of June I should like to discuss this matter with you before my departure so that I might be able to report personally to my Government what the views of the American Government on the question are. I should like to believe that you would be able to study the question in the meantime and to receive me in the first days of June for a personal discussion of the question.4

I am, my dear Mr. Clayton,

Respectfully yours,

Lt. Gen. W. Stoytcheff
  1. A memorandum from George F. Luthringer, Director of the Office of Financial and Development Policy, dated May 24, 1946, recommended to Assistant Secretary Clayton that the interview by Stoichev be granted. The memorandum, which was concurred in by the Division of Southern European Affairs and by the Division of Commercial Policy, defined American policy on the Bulgarian request for a credit as follows: “The Department’s position, based on a decision by the Secretary in March, is that no Eximbank credit will be granted to Bulgaria under the present circumstances. This position is based on (1) non-recognition of the present Bulgarian Government, (2) Bulgaria’s reparations obligations to Greece, and (3) Soviet political control over, and economic drain on, Bulgaria.” (874.51/5–1546) When General Stoichev called at the Department on June 5, 1946, Assistant Secretary of State Clayton explained that an Export-Import Bank loan to Bulgaria would not be possible for the reasons indicated above. The memorandum of the conversation indicated that General Stoichev had apparently not seriously expected to receive a favorable reply to his request. (874.51/6–546)