202. Memorandum From the Special Representative for Economic Summits (Owen) to President Carter1


  • Summit Themes for 1979 and 1980 (U)

1. 1979. Charlie Schultze and I believe that the main theme of the Tokyo Summit should be structural change. Bonn focused on the short-term macro-economic policy, partly because that was the best framework in which to press for the German stimulus we wanted. What we need from Japan is not a specific short-term action but measures—opening the Japanese market more to imports, and shifting to reliance on domestic demand rather than exports for Japanese growth—which will take several years to accomplish. A Summit that focused on long-term structural change would provide a framework for seeking these Japanese measures. It would also provide a framework for examining energy and North-South problems which, by their nature, require long-term solutions. I will propose this theme to the March meeting of the Summit Preparatory Group in Tokyo, and report back to you.2 (C)

2. 1980. Gerard Smith and I believe that a major goal at the 1980 Summit should be to conclude an agreement regarding international ownership and management of certain key elements of the nuclear fuel cycle: reprocessing, enrichment, spent fuel shortage, and plutonium storage. Gerry believes that negotiations, in and out of INFCE, may have progressed far enough to make this feasible. Such an international approach to nuclear energy would both advance non-proliferation and meet nuclear energy legitimate needs; it would be a historic move, comparable to the 1950 agreement between France and Germany to [Page 594] create a European Coal and Steel community. Pat Caddell tells me that there is enough domestic interest in proliferation to make such an agreement politically rewarding, as well as substantively useful. Very serious obstacles exist, which may prevent us from getting the agreement, but we will try to gear our actions between now and then to this goal.3 (C)

  1. Source: Carter Library, National Security Affairs, Brzezinski Material, Subject File, Box 64, Summits: 1/78–8/79. Confidential. Sent for information. Both Carter and Brzezinski initialed at the top of the page.
  2. In the margin adjacent to this paragraph, Carter wrote: “Not a very attractive theme. Is it too obviously pointed at Japan?”
  3. Carter wrote “ok” in the margin adjacent to this paragraph.