Canberra, 24 January 1952
Please convey following message from Prime Minister—
I am pleased to express on behalf of the Government and people of Australia our best wishes for success of the Colombo Exhibition[.T]2he initiative and contribution of the Ceylon Government in arranging the exhibition have been most valuable. The people of Australia wish to see steadily improving conditions of life for the peoples of South and South East Asia. We also hope that the good relations which already exist between the peoples and Governments of South and South East Asia and the rest of the free world will be maintained and enhanced in the future[. I]n order to achieve these ends Australia and other Governments of the British Commonwealth and South East Asia are co-operating together in the Colombo Plan as equal partners in raising standards of human welfare in this region[. T]he Colombo Plan is concerned with basic human needs [,] with an increase in the output of food and raw materials and industrial products[,] an expansion of Social Services[,] and an improvement in educational and health conditions for millions of people. The Plan is a significant demonstration of the ability and will of democratic governments to work together in our common interest. Australia will continue to give the Plan its determined support[. F]or its success the Colombo Plan needs the support not only of Governments but of the people of South and South East Asia[. I]t must therefore be known and understood by those people for whose immediate benefit it is designed[. T]he Colombo Exhibition will assist this purpose and consequently has my complete backing.
[NAA: A1838, 160/11/1/1 part 1]