367 Drakeford to Forde
Cablegram 19 CHICAGO, 5 December 1944, 4.43 a.m.
MOST IMMEDIATE SECRET
For the Deputy Prime Minister from Mr. Drakeford.
Reference my telegram 16 of 1st December  [and that]  of the Prime Minister of the United Kingdom [of 27th November] to the Dominions.  As anticipated and following on a motion to submit to the interim council the five freedoms  (see my paragraph 2) for further study, a resolution was passed whereby the two freedoms should be incorporated in a separate and distinct agreement from the main convention and open to signature by states at this Conference. That is, there will be now three documents for signature:
(a) the main Convention, (b) the International Air Transport Agreement (Five Freedoms) and (c) the International Agreement relating to transit by [scheduled international air services] (two freedoms i.e. the right of transit and the right to land for non-traffic purposes).
The United Kingdom have indicated their intention to sign document (c). New Zealand and the other Dominions will probably sign though Canada is doubtful; I should like to know first who is actually going to sign.
In view of the strong stand we have taken about international operation and ownership there may be some criticism and press comment if we fail to sign document (c).
On the other hand it is clear that all air transport arrangements, since they are left out of the Convention, will have to be settled in bilateral agreements. Our view is that better agreements may be obtained if Australia has four freedoms to grant than if we have only two, which will be the case if we sign (c).
Consequently, you may think it essential to give this question further consideration in the light of the text of the document itself. We cannot telegraph it as the final draft is still under revision and there may be amendments.
In the circumstances I should be glad of instructions as to whether I should sign document (c) or not.