82 Australian Government to Addison

Cablegram 22 CANBERRA, 24 January 1947

SECRET

Trade and Employment.

In our preparations for the Geneva talks and the Commonwealth discussions in London [1] the question has arisen whether requests will be made by one Commonwealth country upon the B.P.T. [2] of the others. From our communications with other Commonwealth countries we judge that Canada and New Zealand do not wish to lodge requests, at least of any magnitude, upon us, and we do not find it necessary, on our part, to make requests from them.

It might thus be assumed that the discussions between Commonwealth countries, commencing 11th March, will be limited to reconciling the view of the respective British countries regarding the surrender or reduction of margins of preference enjoyed on individual commodities, which are included in the lists of requests received from foreign countries. This may well keep the conference fully occupied to the time of departure for Geneva. We should be glad to have your view on this.

For ourselves, we are disposed to support it because the non- receipt of any rate requests makes it difficult to prepare for the meetings in the limited time available.

1 British Commonwealth consultations were to be held before the start of the second session of the Preparatory Committee.

2 British preferential tariff.

[AA : A1068, ER47/1/8]