Statement by the Commissioner for the European Recovery Program, Netherlands Foreign Ministry (Hirschfeld)1


The Netherlands Government took note of the request of the United States Government to cooperate in restricting exports of certain [Page 110] goods to the countries of Eastern Europe which might be of military value for these countries.
In reply to this request mentioned under 1, the Netherlands Government declares that it is prepared to cooperate with the Government of the United States and other interested countries to the fullest extent possible.
The Netherlands Government, however, points to the fact that it has the greatest possible interest in maintaining and expanding trade with the Eastern European countries. The Netherlands economy is dependent on dollar saving raw materials, which it receives from the Eastern European countries under the existing and future bilateral agreement and other arrangements.
Therefore the attitude of the Netherlands Government towards restricting certain exports to the Eastern European countries can not be a rigid one.
Nevertheless the Netherlands Government is prepared to accept the so called Anglo-French list as a guidance in determining its policy with regard to exports to the Eastern European countries.

  1. The source test was sent to Dr. Alan Valentine, Chief of the Economic Cooperation Administration in the Netherlands, under cover of the following communication of May 2 from Dr. H. M. Hirschfeld:

    “On Friday, the 29th April, I made a statement about the Netherlands attitude with regards to the East-West trade for which I was authorized by the Netherlands Government and more in particular by the Minister of Foreign Affairs and the Minister of Economic Affairs.

    I herewith send you for your files the contents of my oral statement which I initialled on behalf of the Netherlands Government.”

    In the source text, this statement is defined as a memorandum of conversation between Dr. Hirschfeld and several aides and Dr. Valentine and several ECA aides. The statement and Hirschfeld’s communication of May 2 were transmitted to the Department of State as enclosure 1 to despatch 206, May 12, from The Hague, not printed. Enclosure 2 to that despatch, a letter of May 2 from Dr. Valentine to Ambassador Harriman, not printed, explained that the statement (or memorandum of conversation) was prepared in consultation with Valentine and other members of the ECA Mission.