635.4131/10–1647: Airgram

The Acting Secretary of State to the Embassy in the United Kingdom


A–998. Reference Embtel 5554, October 16.90 Regarding possible discrimination by Argentina against US in purchases from UK, Department has following comments:

Argentina now has considerable latitude under Argentine note dated October 14, 1941 appended to US-Argentine trade agreement (Exec. Agreement Series 277). Paragraph 3 of this note is as follows:

“The representatives of the Argentine Government have also pointed out that the ability of Argentina to give full effect to these principles [of non-discrimination]91 is dependent on circumstances beyond the control of Argentina. Recently, the Argentine trade-and-payments position has been aggravated to a very important extent by the trade and financial controls which have been adopted by the belligerents in the present European conflict, notably the United Kingdom, one of the principal markets for Argentine export products. In particular, the inability of Argentina to convert freely into dollars the proceeds of sales to the United Kingdom makes it impossible for the Argentine Government to extend full non-discriminatory treatment to the trade of the United States of America”.

As for other countries, consideration would have to be given to any commitments which might be applicable in specific cases. Embassy will note that paragraph 1(b) of Article XIV of General Agreement on Trade and Tariffs92 provides exception similar in purpose to paragraph 5(b) of Swedish aide-mémoire. While the General Agreement provisions on non-discrimination and exceptions thereto are not effective until January 1, 1949, the Department would seek to persuade foreign countries to keep any discrimination exercised within the limits of these provisions.

  1. Not printed.
  2. Brackets appear in the original airgram.
  3. Department of State, Treaties and Other International Acts Series No. 1700; 61 Stat. (pts. 5 and 6).