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200 Sir Earle Page, Minister for Commerce, to Mr J. A. Lyons, Prime Minister

Cablegram unnumbered LONDON, 17 May 1938

MOST URGENT Your telegram of 17th May to High Commissioner, Yampi
Sound. [1] All of us [2] are disturbed by the suggested terms of
the statement firstly because we think that making the only
specific reference to Yampi is inconsistent with the fact that the
prohibition is to be nondiscriminatory and is to affect other
exporters than Yampi company, and secondly because we think the
offer to give compensation goes too far as the amount of money
expended may very well be much greater than the actual loss

We therefore suggest omission of three paragraphs, beginning 'in
reaching its decision' and ending 'operations of Yampi lease', and
substitution therefor of following:-

'The Department of Commerce will be prepared to examine with any
mining company affected by the present decision questions arising
in relation to expenditure which has up to this date actually
taken place in connection with development operations.'
As to communicating the decision to Japanese Consul-General [3] we
consider it should be done on the basis as set out in my cablegram
to you of 13th April [4], as follows:-

'In any correspondence with the Japanese Consul-General we think
an endeavour should be made to notify him on the basis of
conveying information only, as the decision will affect, apart
from one Australian company, viz. Broken Hill Pty Ltd, a British
company and a Japanese company. Should subsequently the Japanese
Consul-General, under instructions from his Government, endeavour
to make an inter-Governmental negotiation of the question, we
consider he should be informed that the Commonwealth Government is
prepared to enter into correspondence only on the basis that it
concerns an investment by a private company.'


1 Document 198.

2 Page, R. G. Menzies (Attorney-General), T. W. White (Minister
for Trade and Customs) and possibly S. M. Bruce (High Commissioner
in London).

3 Torao Wakamatsu.

4 Document 186.

[ANL : PAGE 758]
Last Updated: 11 September 2013
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