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54 Mr J. A. Lyons, Prime Minister, to Mr S. M. Bruce, High Commissioner in London

Cablegram unnumbered 2 August 1937,


Your cablegram 20th January 1936 [1] relative to Yampi Sound Iron
ore deposits in view of reported world shortage of high grade iron
ore glad if you would consult with United Kingdom authorities with
a view to ascertaining whether the position as outlined in your
cablegram has substantially changed.

Preliminary survey which has been made of accessible deposits in
Australia suggests that the life of these deposits particularly if
they are exploited for export on a large scale would not be so
long as we have hitherto been led to believe.

Government at present considering the whole matter and would
appreciate urgent advice as to whether from the point of view of
Empire, consideration of Commonwealth Government should be given
to some restriction on exports of iron ore from Australia to Japan
and whether any portion of output should be deviated to meet
Empire requirements.

1 Printed below as an editorial attachment.


Mr S. M. Bruce, High Commissioner in London, to Mr J. A. Lyons,
Prime Minister

Cablegram unnumbered LONDON, 20 January 1936
Received 21 January 1936


Yampi Sound. Points raised in your telegram of 10th December have
now been discussed with Defence and other United Kingdom
authorities concerned who advise as follows (1) Iron ore deposits
of world so extensive no need for considering conservation Yampi
Sound deposits for future Empire purposes. (2) There are other
Empire deposits of great richness much closer to Europe which it
is impossible profitably to develop for Empire purposes.

Consequently no question of developing Yampi Sound deposits with
aid of United Kingdom Government. (3) Although not at present
required for Empire purposes deposits would be of more use in
emergency if some steps had been taken to develop them and ore was
readily available. (4) It would serve no object and it would not
be desirable to prevent Japanese obtaining their ore from this
source. There are many other sources available to them.



[AA : A461, E373/1/3] LYONS
Last Updated: 11 September 2013
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