30. Telegram From the Delegation at the SEATO Council Meeting to the Department of State1

Secto 28. Morning session February 25 continuation agenda item five [six]—economic cooperation. Philippine delegate read paper2 on urgent need meeting group economic experts soonest. Distributed proposal resolution3 setting forth in some detail terms reference of an economic study group. Pakistan stated had no intention replace existing arrangements such as Colombo plan and introduced new proposal.4 Australian circulated detailed proposal5 set up special working committee on economic affairs.

Secretary expressed belief council would find it difficult agree on such detailed measure as Philippine proposal; that Pakistan proposal about as far as is practical go. As case military matters, economic proposals should go to group experts on basis broad principles. Economic health treaty area requires take into account states not members. Special obligations assumed under treaty need special treatment apart from broad approach to over-all problems area. Group of experts should study and report to council representatives, but implementation will have to continue on bilateral basis to a considerable extent. Endorsed Pakistan proposal. French suggested change calling for economic experts advise council representatives “regularly” or “periodically” not adopted. Australian proposal withdrawn.

Secretary spoke on peaceful uses atomic energy (text sent separately).6 Thailand stated atomic energy would help solve problems [Page 61] hunger, poverty, and disease; grateful to US for facilities for training scientists.

France urged paragraph in communiqué on cultural exchange. Agreed.

New Zealand proposed statement7 in communiqué (sent separately) on Asian-African meeting Bandung. Secretary stated some quarters have said that conflict exists between Manila pact states and aspirations other countries for greater freedom; there is no basis this contention and every effort should be made to make known it is completely inaccurate. In reality we all looking for same objectives, peace, freedom, but sometimes use different avenues and methods of trying reach our goals. Opportunity should be taken dissipate any feeling there such conflict. Asians should take to AA conference sentiment which we feel here, explain meaning Pacific Charter and real purpose treaty.

New Zealand proposed and it agreed that its suggested statement on AA conference be issued as a separate document by council.

Draft proposed communiqué circulated.8 Australia speaks for stronger section on subversion. UK questions wisdom playing up subversion as unable make public anti-subversive measures. Secretary stated we agreed with Australian view and believed it necessary indicate our concern with subversion.9

Morning session adjourned.

  1. Source: Department of State, Central Files, 396.1–BA/2–2555. Confidential. Repeated to Manila, Saigon, New Delhi, Karachi, Rangoon, Djakarta, London, Paris, Singapore, Phnom Penh, Vientiane, Canberra, and Wellington.
  2. Although no separate paper as is described above has been found in Department of State files, the substance of Garcia’s remarks is incorporated in Council document MP(C)(55), cited in footnote 2, Document 18.
  3. MP(C)(55) PhD–3, “Philippine Proposals”, undated, not printed. (Ibid., Conference Files: Lot 60 D 627, CF 427)
  4. MP(C)(55) PaD–3, “Draft Proposal of the Pakistan Delegation”, February 25, not printed. (Ibid.)
  5. “Proposal by Australian Delegation with Reference to Item (VI) of Agenda”, February 25, not printed. (Ibid.)
  6. In Secto 23, February 25, not printed. (Ibid., Central Files, 396.1–BA/2–2555)
  7. The statement on the Afro-Asian Conference proposed by New Zealand as a part of the Bangkok communiqué was instead issued as a separate statement on February 25. As issued, it was identical to the original New Zealand proposal except for the substitution of “cordial” for “fraternal” in the second sentence. For text, see Department of State Bulletin, March 7, 1955, p. 373.
  8. Draft communiqué not found in Department of State files.
  9. In the afternoon session of February 25, the representatives completed the communiqué, made public closing statements, and adjourned the meeting. For text of the communiqué, see Department of State Bulletin, March 7, 1955, p. 371. The Secretary’s closing statement is ibid., p. 374.