394.31/10–251: Telegram

The United States ( GATT ) Delegation to the Secretary of State

confidential

Tagg 53. On Oct 2, USDel had further discussion with Belg del (Cassiers, Janson)1 re Belg decision impose restrictions against dollar imports. Belg del stated his understanding that although decision taken and admin machinery ready to restrict such imports no application for import license yet formally denied. Practice thus far has been to withhold issuance licenses. Belg del stated reason for decision to impose restrictions was imminent threat to reserve position. Further [Page 1486]explain his understanding that EPU managing board favorably received over-all Belg program for reducing EPU surplus although OSR reps in Paris had indicated dislike dollar import restrictions.

USDel advised Belg that if decision firm to institute restrictions addition of item to GATT agenda wld be appropriate this session and process of consultation with CP’s and IMF begun. Further advised that on basis present info Belg reserves and balance of payment position prelim US view that restrictions not necessary intensified. In any event this wld be question on which Fund consultation and advice required. We also stated our understanding that EPU had not sought to pass judgment on wisdom or effectiveness of this particular measure in dealing with Belg EPU surplus.

Suetens returning Geneva today and expected continue discussion tomorrow.

Sent Dept Tagg 53, rptd info Paris 78 for OSR, Brussels 10.

  1. Georges Cassiers, second-ranking official (Vice President) in the Belgian Delegation, and M. G. Janson, “Membre de l’Institut Belgo-Luxembourgeois du Change.”