61. CIEP Decision Memorandum No. 31

The President chaired the first meeting of the CIEP on April 8 from 10:40 a.m. to 12:17 p.m. in the Cabinet Room. Rogers, Connally, Hardin, Stans, Hodgson, Shultz, McCracken, Kissinger, Gilbert, Kennedy, Siciliano, Hinton, Webster, Bergsten, and Peterson attended. Franco Mario Malfatti, President of the Commission of the European Communities, joined the meeting at noon. (Ibid., White House Central Files, President’s Daily Diary)


  • The Secretary of State
  • The Secretary of Treasury
  • The Secretary of Agriculture
  • The Secretary of Commerce
  • The Secretary of Labor
  • The Director, Office of Management and Budget
  • The Chairman, Council of Economic Advisers
  • The Assistant to the President for National Security Affairs
  • The Assistant to the President for Domestic Affairs
  • The Special Representative for Trade Negotiations
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  • Structure of the Council on International Economic Policy

This memorandum supplements my memorandum of January 19, 1971, establishing the Council on International Economic Policy (CIEP).2 In order that I shall be provided the most effective assistance in considering international economic issues, I hereby direct that the Council system operate as follows:

1. Membership

The membership of the CIEP is as set forth in my January 19 memorandum. I shall also invite other agencies to participate in the Council on an ad hoc basis when matters for which they are responsible are to be considered.

I have designated Ambassador Kennedy as a member of the Council.

2. Meetings

The Council shall meet regularly and I shall approve the agenda. I shall chair the Council, but should it be necessary to convene the Council in my absence, the Secretary of State will chair its meetings.

3. Review Group

A Review Group of the Council is hereby established. The Review Group shall:

  • —Review papers for submission to the Council. Such review will assure that issues are fully and objectively stated, that department and agency views are fairly and adequately set out, that all realistic alternatives are presented, and that the issues require Presidential decision. A paper prepared by the Operations Group, task groups, or one or more which requires Presidential action but which need not be considered by the Council will be forwarded by the Executive Director to members of the Council simultaneously with its submission to the President.
  • —Assign action, for implementation or study, to the Operations Group.

The membership of the Review Group shall consist of the Assistant to the President for International Economic Affairs who will serve as Chairman of the Group and designated representatives of members of the Council at the senior political appointee level.

4. Operations Group

The Operations Group will carry out those functions described in my January 19 memorandum. The Executive Director, in consultation with the Chairman of the Operations Group, will refer particular issues to the Operations Group.

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5. Task Groups

The Executive Director may also appoint Task Groups to work on particular problems, as outlined in my January 19 memorandum. I shall expect that he will call upon the best expertise in and out of the Government for staff work on such Task Groups.

6. Interdepartmental Groups

Whenever issues under consideration by NSC Interdepartmental Groups include significant economic issues, the Assistant to the President for International Economic Affairs shall be represented. Economic matters within the purview of the CIEP, and previously treated by the NSC Interdepartmental Groups, shall henceforth become the responsibility of the CIEP, and may be assigned to interdepartmental groups established within the Operations Group framework, or to Task Groups.

7. Consolidation of Existing Committees

Following due consideration, I shall announce the consolidation within the Council structure, to the extent practical, of existing committees and groups presently dealing with responsibilities that I have now assigned to the Council.

Richard Nixon
  1. Source: Department of State, S/S Files: Lot 82 D 126, Box 5197, CIEP Decision Memoranda. Confidential. Transmitted to the National Security Council under cover of an April 5 memorandum from Peterson to Kissinger and Shultz, which noted that the paper had been approved by the State Department. Another copy is attached to an April 6 memorandum from Bergsten to Kissinger recommending that Kissinger approve the organizational arrangements in time for the President to approve and announce it at the first CIEP meeting on April 8. Bergsten noted that the Decision Memorandum was the result of long negotiations between Peterson and the State Department, which had concurred even though the memorandum was different from what State had proposed. (National Archives, Nixon Presidential Materials, NSC Files, Agency Files, Box 218, CIEP)
  2. See Document 19.