225 Commonwealth Government to Melville

Cablegram 6 CANBERRA, 17 July 1944


Your cables 13 to 26. [1]

Australian Government accepted representation on understanding that it was to be a conference of officials but without any commitment even at official level. [2] Finally proceedings were to be submitted to Governments for complete freedom of acceptance or rejection.

The proposal that officials should now sign and recommend the documents is a departure from this understanding and if carried into effect would be embarrassing.

Further, your instructions [3] emphasised that an international obligation for a full employment policy as preliminary or complementary to the monetary agreement was an essential feature.

The apparent rejection [4] of this proposal by the conference affects the basis of policy as defined in your instructions.

First, you should request that the proposal for signature by officials should not be pursued. For your own private information we are taking up this question direct with the United Kingdom and United States of America Governments, vide copy of telegram repeated to you. [5] You should not disclose information as to this telegram.

Second, if however, the conference decides to proceed to signature you will inform the conference that you feel it would not be proper for you to sign still less to recommend but that you will submit proceedings to the Government for the free and unfettered consideration both of the Government and finally of Parliament.

1 Dispatched 10-16 July. On file AA:A989, 44/735/56/10, i.

Cablegram Financial 25 is published as Document 224.

2 See Document 194.

3 See Document 194.

4 See Document 224.

5 Document 226.

[AA:A989, 44/735/56/10, i]