Nanking Embassy Files, Lot F79, 861 Agricultural Mission

Dr. Claude B. Hutchison to the Ambassador in China (Stuart)

My Dear Ambassador Stuart: When we were in Nanking you spoke of your conviction that effective Government action to improve certain rural conditions is necessary to a fundamental solution of China’s present political difficulties. En route to Shanghai and since arriving here, we have discussed this matter in some detail with Minister Y. T. Tsur, and have made to him some definite suggestions for a forthright Government program that might accomplish these ends. Our proposals are along lines suitable for immediate action which we think would lead to early results.

For your reference they relate to the following: (1) agricultural credit; (2) land taxation; (3) farm tenancy; (4) agricultural extension; (5) chemical fertilizers; and (6) irrigation.

Our suggestion would be that planning for such a program be initiated as early as possible at the highest levels of Government, with instructions to the appropriate agencies to prepare sound and practical plans for procedure.

We believe that, on the whole, the recommendations of the Agricultural Mission provide a sound basis for planning, but detailed plans to give effect to a program are needed. It may well be that a limited number of foreign specialists to help work out such plans would be helpful.

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It occurs to us that the recent turn of events makes this a very opportune time for the Government to announce its determined policy to improve agricultural conditions in China with a definite program along these six lines which need immediate emphasis. I am told that Minister Tsur expects to present this idea to Premier T. V. Soong. Perhaps you may wish to discuss these matters with President Chiang and Dr. Soong.

I am writing to General Marshall today along the same lines.

Very sincerely yours,

Claude B. Hutchison