76 Department of External Affairs to Australian Delegation, United Nations

Cablegram 587 CANBERRA, 2 October 1947, 3.45 p.m.

Our 581 Post-U.N.R.R.A. Relief.

Treasury has approved statement on I.C.E.F. In addition following short general statement now approved by the Prime Minister:-

On 12th May this year, the Australian Government approved a contribution of A4 million to post-U.N.R.R.A. relief.

Of this total amount, A860,000 covers the Australian contribution to the International Refugee Organisation for the current year, the remainder to go to the International Children's Emergency Fund, the UNESCO Reconstruction Fund and general post-U.N.R.R.A.


After detailed consideration here of needs and availability of supplies and consultations with the United Nations Secretariat, it is tentatively proposed that the A3,140,000 remaining after the contribution to IRO is made should be allocated as follows:

A General post-UNRRA relief 2,050,000 I.C.E.F. 800,000 UNESCO Reconstruction Fund 90,000 Freight and Contingency Reserve 200,000 3,140,000.

In addition, U.N.R.R.A. residuals amounting to approximately A200,000 are likely to be available for the Children's Fund, making a total contribution to the Fund of approximately A1,000,000.

The Australian contribution will be made in the form of wool, food, medical supplies, clothing and some types of industrial equipment. It is proposed that the whole of the food contribution will go to the Children's Fund. The contribution to general relief will be mainly in the form of wool, supplemented by clothing, medical supplies and industrial equipment.

The Australian contribution to the UNESCO Reconstruction Fund will be partly in the form of educational equipment but mainly in the form of scholarships and other training assistance at Australian universities, teachers' training colleges, high schools, agricultural colleges, etc. It is believed that this latter form of contribution will be of permanent value to the countries assisted.

In addition, it is intended that a United Nations Appeal for children will be conducted in Australia, a substantial part of which will go to the International Children's Emergency Fund. It is hoped that this appeal will prove to be a valuable supplement to the contribution made by the Australian Government.

The problem of reconstruction in Europe and Asia is so urgent for world security and prosperity that every country, no matter how small, which can afford to help, must play its part. Australia has been in the forefront of countries recognising this necessity. The United States has agreed to match in dollars the contribution of other countries to the Children's Fund. This will mean that the supply of dollars for children's relief will be dependent on the contribution which other countries, including Australia, will be prepared to make.

[AA: A1068, R47/3/6, i]