110. Message From President Ford to French President Giscard1
WH51990. Deliver at opening of business.
Dear Mr. President:
I have reflected further on our recent exchange of messages concerning the economic summit and, particularly, the question of Canadian participation. From the contacts that I or my associates have had with the other participants it appears that there is considerable sentiment among them favoring Canadian participation in the kind of summit that has now emerged from the preparatory work and the decisions of the original group. I continue to feel strongly that Canadian participation is justified given Canada’s role in the world. As I have already pointed out to you, Canada is our largest trading partner; our economies are intimately connected. Its absence from our deliberations would not be understood in this country. The Canadians, to their credit, have not so far made a public issue of this problem; it is clear from our contacts with them that they would wish the summit to be productive, in precisely the spirit you and I have agreed in the past. Prime Minister Trudeau will be visiting Washington on October 23 in connection with our Bicentennial celebrations and we will be meeting on that occasion. I am convinced that the purposes you and I would like to see served by the summit would be advanced if the Canadian issue were solved in a positive sense so that it will not become a matter of public debate and cloud the very promising prospects of the summit enterprise.
I have followed the reports of your Soviet visit with great attention and would be most interested in your personal assessment of the Soviet scene.2