349. Memorandum of Conversation1


  • Review of Canadian Foreign Policy: China


  • US
    • The Secretary
    • Rufus Z. Smith, Country Director for Canada
  • Canada
    • Mitchell Sharp, Secretary of State for External Affairs
    • A. E. Ritchie, Ambassador
    • Marcel Cadieux, Under-Secretary, Department of External Affairs
    • Basil Robinson, Deputy Under-Secretary, Department of External Affairs

Mr. Sharp noted that in the course of the foreign policy review which his government is undertaking,2 the China question would be re-examined. The Canadian public, he observed, thinks its government should look very hard at the question of whether there is a way of getting [Page 738] China into the UN without forcing Taiwan out. The question of Canadian recognition would also arise. He inquired whether the Secretary saw any change in the US position.

Secretary Rusk replied that we had made a number of efforts to increase contacts with the Chinese Communists in a variety of fields. Peking, however, always takes the position that before any progress can be made we must abandon Formosa. He wondered, therefore, if this did not provide the answer to Mr. Sharp’s problem.

  1. Source: National Archives and Records Administration, RG 59, Central Files 1967-69, POL 1 CAN-CHICOM. Secret; Exdis. Drafted by Smith and approved in S on May 6. The memorandum is Part IV of IX. The meeting was held in the Secretary’s office.
  2. On April 6 the Liberal Party elected Pierre Elliott Trudeau as party leader. He succeeded Pearson as Prime Minister on April 20. Mitchell Sharp replaced Paul Martin as Minister of External Affairs the same day. On April 23 Trudeau called for new elections on June 25.