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Historical documents

56 Chifley to Cripps

Message [CANBERRA], 4 November 1949

TOP SECRET
In your message of 24th October, you asked me to let you have a
forecast of Australia's dollar balances of payments for 1949/50
and for the calendar year 1950 and in my reply on 25th October I
undertook to supply as soon as possible the best estimates we
could provide.

[matter omitted]

The adjustment of exchange rates which took place in September [1]
has, of course, complicated the picture still further. These
changes are of such recent date that it is still much too early
for us to be able to make any real assessment of their effects
either on the demand for dollar imports or on our dollar export
receipts.

Nevertheless, I fully appreciate that in the present situation you
regard it as of the utmost importance to make some forward
projection of the dollar balance of payments of the Sterling Area
as a whole and I have therefore had the figures set out in
Attachment A put together and am sending them to you as
representing the best forecast we are able at this stage to
provide of the main items in Australia's dollar balance sheet for
the last half of 1949 and for each half of 1950. The estimates
cover transactions with Canada as well as with the United States
and the other American Account countries.

[matter omitted] [2]

Drawings From the International Monetary Fund
These are not shown in the attached Table. However, as you know,
we have already purchased $20 m. from the Fund [3] and have
foreshadowed seeking a further drawing of $20 m. during the
current financial year.

Attachment

MAIN ITEMS IN AUSTRALIA'S DOLLAR BALANCE OF PAYMENTS

(U.S.$m)
Estimates

Second Half First Half Second Half
1949 1950 1950
Exports f.o.b. 52 64 42
Imports from the Dollar Area f.o.b.

(other than oil) -85 -66 -60
Oil imports from the Dollar Area f.o.b. -8 -8 -8
Net invisibles 34 -32 -32
4th November, 1949

1 See Document 52.

2 The omitted matter comprises notes on the figures in the
attachment.

3 See Document 55.


[AA: A462/19, 551/17]
Last Updated: 11 September 2013
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