67. Memorandum From the Vice President’s Assistant for National Security Affairs (Clift) to Vice President Mondale1


  • Follow-Up on Your Visit to West Africa

In keeping with the practice you have established, upon your return from Africa I asked State and the NSC to bring together a comprehensive report on the actions being taken to implement the initiatives resulting from your trip. I have worked closely with Moose and Funk on this.

State has now sent to the White House (Tab A) its report—which is concurred in by the NSC.

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In almost every instance, the report indicates that satisfactory follow-up action is underway. On pages 1 and 2 of the report the Department of State and NSC recommend, and I concur, that you take the following actions to build on the African trip:

—A letter to Orville Freeman (Tab 1)2 asking him to serve as Chairman of the U.S.-Nigerian Joint Agricultural Consultative Committee;

—A letter to IDCA Director Ehrlich (Tab 2)3 asking IDCA to fund the initial visit of the Consultative Committee;

—A recommendation to the President that he confirm an appointment for President Shagari of Nigeria on the October 7 White House calendar.4 (I would note that this is a fast-moving item. The office call has been confirmed. Anne Wexler and Louis Martin will be pressing the President to agree to give a dinner for Shagari, bearing in mind the highly successful impact of Mugabe’s White House visit.5 Anne notes that Gretchen Posten is enthusiastic provided the President gives the go-ahead, and she notes that we will be in the new budget cycle. I told her that I would recommend to you that you support a White House dinner for Shagari and that if you agreed I would include it in your talking points for your September 8 luncheon with the President.6 In addition to the political benefit which Anne and Louis see, there are important foreign policy reasons for the President to extend such hospitality to Shagari. Shagari sees his first visit to the United States as President, a visit in which he will present Nigeria’s 20th Anniversary of Independence address to the UN, as very important. His visit builds on the success of your meetings just concluded in Lagos, and has the potential for a further increase in the constructive development of U.S.-Nigerian relations.);

—And, a recommendation that you advise Ambassador Evron of the results of your conversations in Africa on possible African moves toward the establishment of relations with Israel.7 I will include talking points on this subject for your meeting with Eppi on Tuesday, September 2.

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That you sign the letter to Orville Freeman at Tab 1 and the letter to Tom Ehrlich of IDCA at Tab 2.8

Tab A

Memorandum From the Executive Director of the Department of State (Tarnoff) to the President’s Assistant for National Security Affairs (Brzezinski)9


  • Follow-Up On the Vice President’s Trip to West Africa

This memorandum lists the initiatives which resulted from the Vice President’s visit to West Africa July 16–23. There are four actions which might require direct follow-up by the Vice President. Two of these related to the establishment of the Joint Agricultural Consultative Committee, which was one of the key areas of concentration at the bilateral meetings in Lagos. We recommend that the Vice President consider the following:

1. Sign a letter to Orville Freeman asking him to serve as the Chairman of the Joint Agricultural Consultative Committee. The Department has already discussed the Committee with Mr. Freeman but nobody has yet asked him to be Chairman. A self-explanatory draft letter which has been cleared by Agriculture Under Secretary Hathaway is attached to this memorandum (Tab 1).

2. Sign a letter to IDCA Director Thomas Ehrlich requesting that IDCA consider funding the initial visit to Nigeria of the members of the Joint Agricultural Consultative Committee (scheduled for late this year or early next year) to identify projects. IDCA was originally very forthcoming on this idea, but has recently shown signs of diminished interest. A draft letter is also attached (Tab 2).

3. Secure a time on the President’s schedule for a meeting with President Shagari of Nigeria. In response to the Vice President’s invitation, President Shagari will arrive in Washington on the morning of October 7 and depart that same evening for Nigeria. The White House has been unable to provide a time for this meeting because of the [Page 202] uncertainties for the President’s schedule so far in advance. Although recognizing that this is an election year, the Nigerians are very sensitive about sufficient advance notification. In 1973 President Nixon kept Head of State Yakubu Gowon waiting for an appointment that never materialized. This non-meeting contributed substantially to a deterioration in relations with Nigeria. Both the Ambassador in Washington and at the UN have indicated that they would very much appreciate early confirmation of an appointment time.

4. Debrief Israeli Ambassador Evron on the results of the visit. The Israelis are very interested in the results of any conversations of the Vice President regarding possible African moves toward the reestablishment of relations with Israel. The Israeli Embassy understood before the visit that the Vice President would urge African leaders to consider these ties.

Following is the list of initiatives from the Vice President’s visit with notes on the current status of each.

I. Regional

Ambassador Hormats agreed to send a letter to ECOWAS regarding US assistance to that organization. The letter has been sent. STR is now following up on a proposed symposium on US–ECOWAS trade and investment, scheduled tentatively for October 28–29.

II. Senegal

A. Assistance to police the territorial seas off Senegal, The Gambia, Guinea-Bissau and Mauritania. The President of the Senegalese Economic and Social Council requested assistance in protecting offshore fishing areas. In response to this request the Vice President raised the issue with Goler T. Butcher, AID Assistant Administrator for Africa. AID is pursuing the issue with the preparation of a document for design of a project on the protection of fisheries. Discussion of the issue with Senegalese officials is anticipated in the context of a visit to Senegal September 29 to October 1 by the President’s Science Advisor Frank Press.

B. Request for a stepped-up youth exchange program between the U.S. and Senegal. In response to a request from the Minister of Youth and Sports, the Vice President said that we would place the Minister in contact with appropriate American organizations when he visited the U.S. in September 1980. USICA is arranging these contacts at the present time.

III. Niger

A. C–130 Pilot Training. The Vice President told President Kountche that we would train C–130 pilots and ground crew members under our IMET program in FY 81. The allocation of funds must await Con [Page 203] gressional action on FY 81 aid appropriations. Agreement has already been reached within the Department to reprogram funds in FY 81.

B. USAID level increase. The Vice President told President Kountche that we would increase our FY 81 AID program level. After receiving clearance from AID, delegation informed Nigerians that US assistance would increase by $3 million in FY 81—an amount equivalent to the FY 81 request of Congress. AID is pursuing this.

C. Support for Niger with the IBRD and other international financial institutions. The Vice President pledged that the U.S. would support Niger in its international efforts to offset the revenue shortfall caused by the slump in uranium prices. At about the same time, the IMF approved a $7.1 million SDR Trust Fund Loan. The State Department will remain in close contact with Treasury on these questions.

D. Talks with Kountche. President Kountche suggested the Vice President speak with the Nigerian President about the situation in Chad and Liberia. Only Liberia was discussed with Foreign Minister Audu during the visit to Lagos. The Department has forwarded a brief summary of this conversation and that of Mr. Moose during his subsequent visit to Monrovia for the Ambassador to use in his discussions with President Kountche.

E. Uranium issues. Since the Vice President’s visit, we have been notified that the Libyan Nuclear Non-proliferation Treaty (NPT) safeguards agreement entered into force July 8, 1980. As a result the pressure is diminished on Niger to cease its exports to Libya. Uranium shipped to Libya by Niger will now be under safeguards pursuant to the safeguards agreement. To facilitate the flow of information in this area Niger will continue to record its exports in the Official Journal and will begin to report directly to the IAEA.

F. Arms sales. President Kountche indicated that the Nigeriens would be interested in purchasing military equipment from the United States. There has been no subsequent discussion of this topic between the Nigeriens and our Embassy.

G. Closer cooperation in the area of intelligence exchange. In response to President Kountche’s request for cooperation in this area, the Vice President agreed to send a senior intelligence officer to Niamey to meet with President Kountche. A message about this visit, now scheduled for late September or early October, was sent August 11, [2 lines not declassified].

IV. Nigeria

A. General

1. Meeting between President Carter and President Shagari. As noted on the first page, preparations are underway for President Shagari’s visit to Washington.

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2. The US agreed to consider issuance of multiple entry visas for students. We are waiting for a response from the Nigerians regarding reciprocity. The Embassy will follow up.

B. Agriculture.

1. Implementation of Memorandum of Understanding on Agricultural Cooperation. Under Secretary Hathaway will chair the U.S. side of the working group set up to implement the agreement. We are waiting for the Nigerian Ministry of Agriculture to identify priority projects. The FGN ministry has promised us this information by September 1. Quentin West or Dale Hathaway will be on the Frank Press trip, and the Working Group will meet at that time to discuss specific project proposals based on these priorities.

2. Establishment of Joint Agricultural Consultative Committee. State is in the process of compiling a list of potential members. We are aiming for the American side to meet with President Shagari during his October visit to Washington, and for the team to travel to Nigeria late this year or early next year.

C. Energy

1. The Department of Energy is developing specific proposals, including estimates of budget requirements, for the implementation of each of the energy cooperation areas mentioned in the Joint Communique.10 These proposals should be ready in about two weeks.

2. The DOE proposals will include programs of information and training involving exchange of scientific and technical information in each area. They will also include in some areas short-term visits by scientific and technical persons from the two countries. They may also include temporary assignments of a few Nigerians at DOE and private facilities for training and observation. The proposals will be discussed with a Nigerian team (yet to be named) when they visit Washington this fall.

3. In solar energy, DOE is working to identify one or more solar demonstration projects which could be jointly funded, in addition to preparing an information and training program directed at the development of a solar research capability in Nigeria. This will also be discussed during the fall visit of the Nigerian experts.

4. In the area of “facilitation of joint ventures and other appropriate vehicles for manufacturing equipment and material to support the oil industry in Nigeria,” DOE will be working with the office of the Special Trade Representative to develop proposals for cooperation. State is participating in the preparation of the proposals.

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D. Science and Technology

1. A draft S&T agreement and projects were tabled during the bilaterals. The advance team for Frank Press visited Lagos August 4–5 and discussed both matters with the Nigerians. The Nigerians are reviewing our agreement and we expect a response from them shortly. Specific follow-up actions on priority project areas were also agreed upon. The Department is coordinating these actions within the USG. Several of the more promising proposals that emerged include cooperation in fisheries development, industrial management and maintenance technology, and remote sensing via LANDSAT.

2. In connection with areas of priority concern identified by the Nigerians, the USG sent a team of experts from EPA to Nigeria August 21 to develop specific project proposals for cooperation in environment. A NOAA team arrives in Lagos on August 29 to discuss a fisheries-marine science agreement.

3. AID’s regional housing officer in Abidjan will visit Nigeria in September at the time of the Press visit to discuss Nigerian interests in obtaining training assistance for government and mortgage banking personnel.

E. Trade and Investment

1. Ambassador Hormats agreed that upon his return to the U.S. he would speak with Export-Import Bank Chairman, John Moore, to determine why Ex-Im had not financed more projects in Nigeria and report back to the Nigerians. Hormats spoke to Moore, who has promised to send him a full report on EXIM activity in Nigeria. When he receives the report (which will show that EXIM is moving very rapidly but the Nigerian bureaucracy is not acting on projects), he will send a copy to the Nigerians.

2. The US side agreed to consider promptly the contents of the proposed “Agreement on Economic, Scientific and Technical Cooperation” tabled during the talks and respond to this initiative in September. Most of the substance of this will be included in the agreement to be signed during the Press visit. We are working with the Press staff to make sure this deadline is met.

3. The US side agreed to inquire at the Justice Department when they would provide a clarification of the legal status of negotiations between the American West African Freight Conference and the US. We have provided a tentative response, and will respond further when Justice reaches a final decision which is expected in about three months.

4. Commerce agreed to assist in the establishment of trade and investment centers in the U.S. Commerce is gathering information on existing centers here and abroad to determine representative costs, staffing requirements, methods of operations etc., to send the Embassy for the Nigerians by the end of this month.

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5. Assist FGN to identify ways in which Nigeria can take greater advantage of USDOC’s services. Commerce has prepared packages of information pamphlets on their services to be given to ministries and other FGN officials. These packages were sent August 15.

6. Assist Nigeria to derive maximum benefit from OPIC. FGN has promised to send OPIC a list of specific projects they are interested in. Once that list is received, OPIC will review it and begin recruiting appropriate companies for an investment mission to Nigeria.

7. Each government agreed to designate a senior official to be in frequent contact on trade and investment problems. The USG has proposed designating Commerce Deputy Assistant Secretary Peter Gould as our senior official. When approved by the Secretary of Commerce (by the end of August), we will formally notify the FGN and request that they name a counterpart official.

8. The USG and the FGN agreed to conduct joint seminars in major U.S. cities to expose American business people to opportunities in the Nigerian market. Commerce plans to wait until the FGN names its senior official (see above) before organizing seminars.

9. The US and the Nigerians agreed to exchange drafts for a Bilateral Trade Agreement. We received a draft agreement from the Nigerians on August 9, which was a form agreement more suitable for use with a non-GATT country; thus it is not applicable to our purposes. The Trade Policy Committee is drafting a new agreement incorporating some of the language from the Nigerian draft. We expect to cable a draft to Lagos early in the first week of September. The Nigerians have been informed of the reasons for the delay.

10. The US agreed to support legislation for Congressional authorization for GSP eligibility for Nigeria. This must await outcome of negotiation of bilateral trade agreement.

11. The US and the Nigerians agreed to resume negotiations on the Bilateral Tax Treaty. The US proposed March 2 to resume negotiations. The Nigerians have tentatively accepted this date.

12. The Nigerians agreed to notify GATT of their trade restrictions each year. The Office of the Special Trade Representative will monitor this decision.

13. The Nigerians agreed to review their policy regarding issuance of Multiple Entry Visas to businessmen and others. State and Commerce are compiling information to provide the Nigerians with an update on recent experiences of businessmen. The Nigerians agreed then to review their policy. The Embassy will monitor this situation.

14. The Nigerians agreed to explore the possibility of centralizing and simplifying the approvals process for foreign investors. The Embassy will follow up by continuing to encourage such action.

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15. The Nigerians agreed to advise the US regarding the status of Corps of Engineers Niger River Project. There has been no contact as yet.

16. Establishment of a Nigeria-US Business Council. The US Chamber of Commerce has been informed. State has discussed next steps with them. Follow up rests with U.S. Chamber, as this is to be a strictly private sector organization.

F. Education

1. Both sides agreed to act on the final agreement and signing of the teacher training program. We are waiting for a response from the Nigerians. IDCA is pursuing this.

2. Status report on use of funds from National Universities Commission (NUC) block grant. ICA is looking into this. They will then submit a proposal for integrating NUC program with Fulbright program by early September.

3. Explore linkages in higher education including availability of Title XII assistance for higher education. State and ICA are exploring these possibilities and will advise the Embassy by early September.

4. The US agreed to advise the Nigerians on criteria for issuance of J–I visas for students. The Embassy and ICA are providing information on requirements to the Nigerians.

5. The Nigerians agreed to post education attaches at their Embassy and consulates. The Ministry of Education proposal is being circulated within the Nigerian Government. Our Embassy will be checking on the status.

V. Cape Verde

A. Affirmation of commitment to deliver 5000 MT of corn in PL 480 Title II program when adequate storage is available. The PL 480 office has already begun arrangements to ship the corn, scheduled for September when it is anticipated that storage will be available and the corn needed. This process is still underway but no problems are foreseen.

B. Statement that the US is pleased to work with Cape Verde on a possible Title III program (without a commitment). No action will be taken until after the start of FY 81. No further action required at the moment; the Department will follow-up with AID when planning begins on the next budget cycle.

C. John Sawhill of the Department of Energy offered to assist the Director of the Technical Research Institute, should he visit the US again, in obtaining any information on US programs for alternate energy. The Department of Energy agreed in any case to provide whatever documentation the Institute might request, and to “cooperate in other ways.” The ball is in the GOCV court on the DOE offer. If nothing [Page 208] is forthcoming, State might recommend that DOE send a letter confirming our interest in providing this information.

D. Statement that the US was doubling its Portuguese language scholarship program ($100,000 to $200,000). This was stated in the context of a discussion about AID training in the US for agricultural/irrigation projects. AID has already doubled the technical training program allocation, for FY 80, as the Vice-President stated. Nominees are to be selected by the GOCV.

E. The Vice President suggested that our Charge inform Defense Minister Da Luz of our offer to provide medical treatment for his daughter. Charge Torre has discussed this with the Defense Minister and the details of his daughter’s visit to Washington are being arranged for early September.

Peter Tarnoff11
  1. Source: Carter Library, Donated Material, Mondale Papers, Box 36, Vice President’s Visit to West Africa [7/17/80–7/23/80] Memcons and Speeches [2]. Secret.
  2. The letter, dated September 2, is attached but not printed. Mondale wrote “OK” beside this paragraph in the left margin.
  3. Tab 2 is attached but not printed. Mondale wrote “OK” beside this paragraph in the left margin.
  4. See Document 69.
  5. Mugabe met with Carter on August 27. See Document 258 in Foreign Relations, 1977–1980, vol. XVI Southern Africa.
  6. Mondale wrote “OK” beside this sentence in the left margin.
  7. Mondale wrote “Done” beside this paragraph in the left margin.
  8. Mondale signed both letters.
  9. Secret.
  10. See footnote 4, Document 65.
  11. Seitz signed for Tarnoff above Tarnoff’s typed signature.