233. Telegram From the Department of State to the Embassy in France0

3005. Embassy deliver Friday1 following letter from Under Secretary Ball to Minister of Government who will represent addressee country at GATT Ministerial Meeting. USEC also deliver mission.

Begin verbatim text. Dear Mr. Minister:

I am looking forward to the prospect of seeing you in Geneva next week during the GATT Ministerial meeting.2 In addition to the matters that may be presented during the formal sessions of the GATT I should like to have an opportunity to talk with you about the problems raised by the continued failure to bring to a conclusion the Geneva tariff negotiations.

These problems are of deep concern to the United States. The issues that prevent the satisfactory conclusion of the negotiations seem now to have assumed such a character that they can be resolved only by agreement among responsible ministers. I greatly fear that unless we can reach such an agreement during the early days of next week the situation may get out of hand.

[Page 502]

I am sure you will agree that it is to our mutual political and economic interests to complete these negotiations at the earliest possible date. On our part, we are presently perfecting plans for the presentation of a new liberal trade program to Congress. Without the assurance of a satisfactory conclusion to the present round of tariff negotiations we can hardly go forward with this initiative.

I would hope, therefore, that I might have the opportunity in Geneva of meeting privately with the responsible ministers of the Six member countries EEC and a Commissioner of the European Economic Community in an effort to resolve the differences still remaining between the Community and the United States concerning these negotiations.

I am sending this letter to you in advance of the meeting so that, if you share the sense of urgency I have expressed, you might arrange for authority from your own Government to make whatever decisions are necessary for a mutually satisfactory solution to the present stalemate.

Sincerely yours, End verbatim text.

  1. Source: Department of State, Central Files, 394.41/11-2361. Official Use Only; Priority. Drafted and approved by Ball and cleared by Lawrence Pezzullo (S/S). Also sent to Brussels, Bonn, Rome, The Hague, Luxembourg and repeated to Geneva for GATT.
  2. November 24.
  3. A summary of the meeting, held November 27-30, 1961, is contained in the Report of the U.S. Delegation to the 19th Session of the Contracting Parties to the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade, February 13, 1962. (Department of State, Central Files, 394.41/2-1362)