128 Australian Government to Beasley

Cablegram 64 CANBERRA, 15 March, 1946

IMMEDIATE

Re our cable No. 122 of March 12th to Dominions Office. [1] There has been much publicity here suggesting that United Kingdom favours revival of German Synthetic Textile Industry while United States favours cotton. In each case self interest doubtless has important influence.

We desire that Wool Textile Industry receive favourable treatment.

Formerly of great economic importance, the Wool Textile Industry of Germany was substantially sacrificed to synthetics during era of self containment. There is the strongest justification for its rehabilitation.

Glad you take matter up with United Kingdom Government.

International Wool Secretariat fully apprised of position and can efficiently advise you and furnish all necessary statistics. [2]

1 Stressing Australia's hopes for revival of the woollen textile industry in Germany.

2 A reply from the High Commissioner's office on 24 March reported assurances from the Ministry of Supply that wool would in fact enjoy some initial advantage, the U.S. Govt having dropped proposals to supply large quantities of cotton, and synthetic production being delayed by shortages of chemicals and wood pulp.

Requests for wool supplies had already been received and were expected to increase significantly. On 12 April a reply from the Dominions Office to cablegram 122 noted that the agreement between the four occupying powers on treatment of the German economy provided for operation of certain industries, including woollen textiles, at a level allowing some exports, but that shortages of fuel and labour would preclude operation at prewar level for some time.

[AA:A3196, 1946, 0.5251]