893.50 Recovery/6–649

Memorandum by the Director of the Office of Far Eastern Affairs (Butterworth)

The following steps were taken during the period from May 3 through June 3, 1949 in implementation of NSC–41:

On May 4, the Advisory Committee to the Secretary of Commerce considered a Department of Commerce recommendation that [Page 852] the R procedure be extended immediately to China, Hong Kong, Macao and north and south Korea, irrespective of whether assurances of British cooperation have been received. The Department of State representative requested that a decision regarding the timing of such action be deferred to allow for further efforts to obtain British cooperation. He indicated that if a response from the British Government was not received in the next few days, it would be recommended that the Secretary of State take the matter up with the British Ambassador.
At its May 4 meeting, the Advisory Committee referred the technical aspects of applying the R procedure to China to the Operating Committee which, in turn, assigned to the Technical Steering Committee the task of sorting the commodities on the 1A and 1B lists into categories applicable to the pattern of trade with China.
On about May 5th, the British Embassy indicated that it expected that a response from the British Foreign Office to the Department of State’s memorandum of April 21 would be received shortly. Consequently, it was decided to postpone, for the time being, a recommendation to the Secretary of State that he discuss the question of British cooperation with the British Ambassador.
On May 13th, no response having been received from the British Government, a recommendation33 was made to the Secretary of State that he discuss the matter with the British Ambassador and/or with the British Foreign Minister34 in Paris. The Secretary was unable to consider this recommendation before leaving for Paris.
On May 27, the Acting Secretary35 called in the British Minister,36 in the absence of the Ambassador, and emphasized to him the urgent need for British cooperation in the application of controls on exports to China. The Minister stated that he and the Ambassador understood the situation thoroughly and were pressing London for its views.
The Counselor of the British Embassy called at the Department of State on May 31 and left a memorandum dealing with the problem of British cooperation with the United States in controlling strategic exports to China. The memorandum did not indicate whether or not the British Government was prepared in principle to cooperate. It emphasized, however, the problems of obtaining cooperation by other western European sources of exports to China, and of ensuring adequate control of various entrepôt centers for trade with China. The memorandum indicated a willingness to explore the technical aspects [Page 853] of the problem, and proposed that discussions for this purpose be carried on at London.
The British memorandum was discussed at a meeting of the Advisory Committee on June 3. There was general agreement that further efforts should be made to obtain British cooperation and that we should accept the British proposal to hold technical discussions at London. It was also agreed that, in preparation for such discussions, the Technical Steering Committee would consider promptly the 1A and 1B lists37 in their application to China.

  1. Memorandum by the Director of the Office of Far Eastern Affairs, not printed.
  2. Ernest Bevin, British Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs.
  3. James E. Webb, Under Secretary of State.
  4. Sir Frederick R. Hoyer Millar.
  5. 1A list contained materials of high military significance; 1B list contained key industrial, transportation, and communications equipment and supplies.