71 Department of External Affairs to Eggleston

Cablegram SC21 CANBERRA, 5 November 1942


Your S.132. Extraterritorial treaty. [1]

1. Minister desires you to negotiate treaty at Chungking and he wishes you to know you have his complete confidence in respect of this matter. He desires a short treaty dealing with abrogation of extraterritorial rights, avoiding the contentious clauses six and eight of the United Kingdom draft. [2]

2. The views of other Dominions, except New Zealand, indicate they also will negotiate separate treaty without inclusion of these clauses. [3]

3. At the same time there should be provision in Australian treaty for future negotiations without definite time limit for trade arrangements so important to our respective countries.

4. It is suggested negotiations commence without delay, with view to simultaneous announcement of U.S.A., United Kingdom and Australian signatures.

5. As to your question of interpretation Article 1, paragraph 2 [4], it should be made very clear, to remove any doubts, that British subjects as well as protected persons must belong to territories in respect of which treaty is made. This point should be raised with United Kingdom negotiators.

6. You will of course keep us informed of course of conversations and telegraph your draft texts before final commitments.

7. We are telegraphing London for full powers for you to be sent direct to Chungking. [5]

1 Dispatched 2 November. On file AA:A981, China 60B, ii.

2 See Document 65, note 4.

3 See cablegrams exchanged between the Commonwealth and Canadian, N.Z. and South African Govts between 21 and 30 October, all of which are on the file cited in note 1. The N.Z. Govt (cablegram 298 of 29 October) proposed to abandon its claim to extraterritorial rights in China by a simple exchange of notes.

4 See the cablegram cited in note 1. The paragraph read: 'In the present Treaty, the term "Nationals of one (or of the other) high contracting party" shall in relation to His Majesty the King mean all British subjects and all British protected persons belonging to territories to which the present treaty applies.' (See cablegram D419 of 17 October as amended by unnumbered cablegram of 5 November on file Defence: Special Collection II, bundle 8, China file no. 1.) 5 See cablegram SL70 of 5 November to Bruce on the file cited in note 1. Bruce dispatched the Full Power to Eggleston on 25 November (see letter on file AA:A4144, 608 (1942-43)).

[AA:A981, CHINA 60B, ii]