- Mr. Lynn’s Memo to the President concerning a Foreign Aid Budget Amendment for Zaire-Add-on
State and AID are requesting a 1976 budget amendment to increase economic aid to Zaire and Mr. Lynn has written you an options paper with regard to that request. My recommendation is that you approve the budget amendment (which would provide for a $14 million supporting assistance budget increase to Zaire) as part of a $50 million assistance package, including an additional $15 million in CCC credit and PL 480 Title I, and a $20 million Ex-Imbank line of credit. We would urge President Mobutu to adopt certain IMF reforms but would provide the $50 million in aid without conditions.
I believe there are important political and economic elements which support approval of the budget amendment, and have attached for your consideration a memorandum outlining some of these elements (Tab A).
As you know, in the wake of President Mobutu’s charges of US Government involvement in a plot against him, I sent Sheldon Vance, our former Ambassador to Zaire, to Kinshasa for discussions with Mobutu aimed at improving our bilateral relations. I have asked Ambassador Vance to return to Zaire to continue those discussions tomorrow, July 18. We hope to convince President Mobutu to accept an IMF stabilization program to deal with his current fiscal problems, and believe we need to inform him of our desire to be of assistance with a $50 million package as a demonstration of our good faith.
I therefore recommend that in considering Mr. Lynn’s memo you approve a $20 million supporting assistance grant for Zaire as part of a $50 million US assistance package and that you agree that while Ambassador Vance would urge adoption of an IMF standby, he would be authorized to provide US aid without condition.
- Source: Ford Library, National Security Adviser, Presidential Country Files for Africa, 1974–77, Box 7, Zaire (1). Confidential. Sent for action. The attachment is not published. A notation on the top of the first page reads: “The President has seen.” The President approved the amendment on July 19. (Memorandum from Connor to Kissinger and Lynn, July 19; ibid.)↩
- Kissinger recommended that the President approve a budget amendment providing for an increase in assistance to Zaire. The attachment offered a political justification for the increase.↩