68. Telegram From the Department of State to Secretary of State Kissinger1

Tosec 50095/156455. Subject: Producer/Consumer Dialogue.

1. My recent discussions on the producer-consumer dialogue with Yamani in Saudi Arabia and Yeganeh, Ansary, and the Shah in Iran have been reported by separate telegrams.2 Based on these discussions, I believe that we could reach agreement in principle with Saudi Arabia and Iran on the following approach:

2. Basic plan: Group of 10 to meet first with the same level of representation as at the April Prepcon, and agree on all the important questions cited below before giving way to the group of 27 at the Ministerial level. The larger group would formally launch the three commissions on energy, other commodities, assistance to least developed countries.

3. Important questions—to be resolved in advance:

(A) Enlarged launching group: It appears that we will likely end up with 27 participants—8 industrialized nations, 8 OPEC and 11 LDC’s—to be selected by the respective groups. The chairman of the group of 27 should be from a neutral country (not France), rotated amongst the 3 participating groups, or possibly from the UN.

(B) Commissions: Three separate commissions to be formed on energy, other commodities and least developed countries relations with financial and monetary questions to be considered in each. (Hopefully Yamani’s demand for a separate commission on finance and monetary matters can be resolved by agreeing to set up a sub-committee under the energy commission.)

(C) Commission participants: Participants in each commission to be selected from among the group of 27 countries by use of objective criteria modified as may be required to meet anticipated political pressure. (These criteria would justify US membership in all three commissions but preclude multiple membership for most of the 27.)

(D) Guidelines for commission programs: General outline of the scope of each commission’s activities to be set for them based largely on [Page 241] the draft agenda considered at the April Prepcon; more detailed agendas to be developed by each commission. Each commission would proceed at its own individual pace reflecting the nature of its tasks and relationships with other international fora operating in the same field.

(E) Commission linkage: Some form of regular contact will be maintained between commissions and with other fora dealing with these subjects. In spite of our continuing opposition, it appears likely that most governments will insist on some arrangement for progress reports back to the group of 27. In this event, we should push for a loose arrangement without fixed schedules and with agreement that there is to be no substantive debate in the group of 27 so as to prevent its becoming a mini-UN. (Both Saudi Arabia and Iran would support this restriction.)

4. Anticipated schedule:

(A) Announcement: The plan for resumption of the producer-consumer dialogue and the date of the Group of 10 meeting to be announced not later than August so as to precede and influence the UNGA Special Session commencing September 1 and the OPEC meeting commencing September 24.

(B) Group of 10 meeting: To take place in Paris in early October (Yamani is still pushing for August, but Iran firmly supports our view that more time is required for careful preparation).

(C) Group of 27 Ministerial: To take place (at a site to be decided) in December (at least 30–60 days after the Group of 10 meeting to allow for selection of the 17 additional participants, issuance of invitations and conclusion of detailed arrangements).

5. The foregoing represents my judgment as to the basis on which Saudi Arabia and Iran would support resumption of the producer-consumer dialogue. My meetings with Venezuela, Brazil (and possibly Algeria) during early and mid-July could indicate the desirability of some change in this plan to ensure the support of these key developing countries which we would want before proceeding with this program.

  1. Source: National Archives, RG 59, Central Foreign Policy Files, P850036–2256. Secret; Immediate; Nodis. Drafted and approved by Robinson. Kissinger was in the Virgin Islands to meet with Israeli officials.
  2. Robinson’s June 29 meeting with Yamani in Jidda was reported in telegram 6252 from Tehran, June 30. His June 11 meeting with Ansary was reported in telegram 15112 from USOECD Paris, June 11, and his June 30 meeting with him and Iranian Central Bank Governor Yeganeh was reported in telegram 6260 from Tehran, June 30. (All ibid., D750226–0501, P850061–1762, D750226–0506)