254. Presidential Review Memorandum/NSC 81


  • The Vice President
  • The Secretary of State
  • ALSO
  • The Secretary of the 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 United States Representative to The United Nations
  • The Special Representative for Trade Negotiations
  • The Director of Central Intelligence
  • The Assistant to the President for Energy Policy


  • North-South Strategy (U)

The President has directed that the Policy Review Committee undertake an analysis of, and provide options concerning, U.S. policy on relations between developed and developing nations. The economic aspects of this analysis are to be staffed through the Economic Policy Group prior to their consideration by the National Security Council. The agencies listed in parentheses should take leadership responsibility for the following subjects:

—Institutional arrangements, including forums in which North-South issues can be discussed, with proposed strategies for UNCTAD and CIEC2 (State)

—Commodities, including commodity agreements, the Common Fund,3 and price indexation (Treasury and State)

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—International financial matters, including aid and debt (Treasury)

—Market access for manufactured goods (State)

—Energy (Schlesinger), relations with OPEC and other LDCs (State), and related financial issues (Treasury)

—Food (Agriculture)

—Migration of workers (Labor)

—Technology transfer and direct investment (Commerce)

—North-South political issues and the conceptual aspect of the structure of U.S. relations with the LDCs (State)

Each study should analyze the contribution of the various policy options to U.S. domestic and global economic interests, humanitarian interests, international political relationships, and security interests. It should include an assessment of the impact of each option on the interests and objectives of other industrialized democracies. Each study should also suggest specific initiatives which the U.S., or the industrialized countries together, might take, and each should assess relevant Congressional considerations, including the nature, timing, and strategy of legislative action. These studies should be completed by February 28 for early submission to the President through the National Security Council.

Zbigniew Brzezinski
  1. Source: Carter Library, National Security Council, Institutional Files, Box 2, PRM/NSC 1–24 [1]. Secret. The Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff was originally included as a recipient, but was deleted on January 22 per Inderfurth’s instructions. NSC Staff Secretary Jeanne Davis forwarded a copy of PRM 8 to the Secretary of Defense under cover of a January 26 memorandum in which she noted that he had been “inadvertently omitted from the list of addressees.” (Ibid.) Acting NSC Staff Secretary Michael Hornblow forwarded a copy to the AID Administrator under cover of a February 9 memorandum in which he noted the AID Administrator’s addition to the list of addressees of PRM 8. (Ibid.)
  2. See footnote 3, Document 28.
  3. At the end of its fourth session in Nairobi, Kenya, in May 1976, UNCTAD agreed to consider the establishment of a Common Fund to finance a buffer stock program designed to smooth out primary commodity price fluctuations. See Foreign Relations, 1969–1976, vol. XXXI, Foreign Economic Policy, 1973–1976, Documents 304306.