The Consul General at Shanghai ( Davis ) to the Secretary of State

2354. The first meeting of the Liquidation Commission for the official assets and liabilities of the former international settlement and French concession was held at 3 o’clock on the afternoon of November 29 in the Municipal Building. Aside from the Chinese members of the Commission there were present advisers from the US, France, Great Britain, the Netherlands, and Switzerland.

Consul Jeffreys29 attended as alternate for the British adviser and Consul Meyer30 as representative of this Consul General pending the appointment of an alternate for the American adviser. It was decided that although the official language of the Commission would have to be Chinese, discussions in the meetings of the Commission would be conducted in English or any other language which [Page 1365] the advisers cared to use. It was also decided that the work of the Commission would be separated into that pertaining to the international settlement and that pertaining to the French concession. Two sub-committees were formed to conduct the work pertaining to the international settlement; one to concern itself with the claims of the former employees of the Municipal Council, the other for all other matters pertaining to the international settlement. With reference to the French concession, it was decided that one sub-committee would handle all matter pertaining to that concession. Dr. Sellett, the American Adviser, is a member of both sub-committees which will deal with international settlement matters but is free to relinquish one or the other to an American alternate when one is appointed. The chairmanship of all sub-committees is to be Chinese. Minutes of sub-committees are to be circulated to all interested parties for their information. The Commission will be reconvened whenever the work of the sub-committees warrants.

The meeting of the Liquidation Commission was conducted in a friendly spirit. It was apparent that all parties represented were eager to get the work of the Commission started and everyone cooperated to that end. The discussion of details was avoided, the discussions being kept on the level of principles to guide the Commission’s work. The Embassy and the Department will be kept currently informed of developments.

Sent to Nanking as 1335, November 30, noon, repeated to Dept.

  1. Ernest W. Jeffery.
  2. Paul W. Meyer.