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304 Department of External Affairs to Hood

Memorandum CANBERRA, 10 December 1946

In correspondence which continued until the date of a memorandum
of 19th November, 1945, we exchanged views and information with
the External Affairs Office, London, on reparations, particularly
with regard to the Inter-Allied Reparations Agency and the Paris
peace conference. We have also corresponded concurrently on this
subject with the Australian Legation in Paris.

2. Subsequent to the abovementioned date, our principal
correspondence has been with the Australian Scientific and
Technical Mission, Australia House, London, which has no doubt
been in consultation with you on matters affecting German

3. You will be aware that on 8th October, 1946, the Assembly of
the Inter-Allied Reparations Agency adopted a resolution deploring
the slow rate at which industrial capital equipment from Germany
is being made available for distribution between the member
Governments of the Agency, as a state of affairs inconsistent with
the reparation policy enunciated in the Yalta communique and the
Potsdam declaration of 2nd August, 1945. The resolution charged
the Agency President with(a) requesting the delegates of the
United States, France and the United Kingdom, being the delegates
of the Governments of those powers occupying Germany, which are
also signatories to the Paris Agreement of 14th January 1946, and
the Soviet Ambassador to Belgium, to bring the resolution urgently
to the notice of their respective Governments, and to inform those
Governments that it was the wish of the Assembly that the matter
be placed on the agenda of the Council of Foreign Ministers at the
earliest possible date, and
(b) informing the President of the Allied Control Council in
Berlin of the action taken by the Assembly.

4. A second resolution, adopted on 7th October, 1946, agreed 'that
the Governments Members of the Inter-Allied Reparations Agency
should be requested to support this resolution by an approach
through diplomatic channels to the five Governments Members of the
Council of Foreign Ministers.'
5. The terms of these resolutions were communicated to the
Secondary Industries Division of the Department of Post-War
Reconstruction, and their views requested.

6. In its reply the Division stated that the time factor in the
obtaining of reparation items is of extreme importance to
Australia. Whereas Australia requires certain machinery at the
present moment, the receipt of similar machinery in two or three
years' time might be of no interest whatsoever to her, as similar
machinery could be obtained by other methods during that time. The
Division supported any move to bring about a quicker delivery of
reparation plants from Germany.

7. Accordingly, in view of the great importance which Australia
attaches to the early conclusion of arrangements for, and
realization of, reparation deliveries, it is desired that you
should take every step open to you to press for speedy
satisfaction on this score.

8. Your advice would also be appreciated as to the desirability or
value of addressing communications on the subject to Governments
who are members of the Allied Control Council for Germany.

9. A copy of this memorandum has been sent to Dr. E. R. Walker.

for Secretary


Last Updated: 11 September 2013
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