Skip to main content

Historical documents

360 Cranborne to Commonwealth Government

Cablegram 337 [1] LONDON, 24 November 1944, 9.25 p.m.


Reference Canberra Telegram No. 301 [2], Wellington Telegram No.

298. [3]

In principle we are in agreement with your proposals for the
establishment of a South Seas Regional Commission which in general
are in conformity with the policy adumbrated by the Colonial
Secretary in July of last year. [4] This is indeed one of the
areas which we had always had in contemplation for the setting up
of such a Commission.

But we feel that these proposals, 'must be viewed in relation to
the wider question of International Co-operation in Colonial
Policy. We have telegraphed to you separately (my immediately
preceding telegram [5]) regarding your proposals for creating a
Central International Body with powers of supervision and
inspection. In our view, if the policy of Regional Commissions is
to be successful these Commissions must be based on the principle
of mutual collaboration in the solution of common problems. The
introduction of any principle of supervision whether by creation
of a Central International Body as suggested by your Governments
or in some other manner would in our opinion gravely prejudice the
successful working of Regional Commissions generally. Moreover,
before progress can be made in this matter it will be necessary to
approach the United States Government. In our view, it would be
desirable that in approaching them we should be in a position to
explain fully our general scheme for international Cooperation in
Colonial Policy and indeed it is unlikely that they would agree to
participate in a Regional Scheme in advance of such general policy
adumbrated by the consultation. As shown in our immediately
preceding telegram we hope shortly to tell to you details of our
plans and thereafter to consider with you the next step.

In the circumstances it seems inevitable that these further
consultations should take place before progress can be made with
the establishment of South Seas Regional Commission.

1 Addressed to the N.Z. Govt as no. 275.

2 Document 346.

3 Dispatched 15 November and addressed to Canberra as no. 203. In
AA:A3195, 1944, 1.40740/44/42.

4 See Document 359, note 9. 5 Document 359.

[AA:A1838, 342/1]
Last Updated: 11 September 2013
Back to top