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United States Department of State / Foreign relations of the United States diplomatic papers, 1937. The British Commonwealth, Europe, Near East and Africa

Estonia,   pp. 259-274 PDF (5.6 MB)

Page 266

United States and that the tentative draft of the Treaty as well as a
statement of the Estonian position would be awaited with interest.
  I was informed that Mr. Mickwitz of the Treaty Division had be-
gun on April 1, 1937, the drafting of a treaty, which would probably
be ready within ten days or a fortnight, at which time it was hoped
a statement could also be furnished of Estonia's position relative to
a treaty with the United States.
  Relative to my inquiry concerning the alleged prohibition of the
importation of Estonian shale oil into the United States, I was in-
formed that Minister Selter would confer with certain shale oil in-
terests and that I would be later informed on this point.
  In making a brief call on Mr. Wirgo at noon today (Saturday,
April 3), I was informed that the alleged classification of shale oil
as "poisonous" by the American authorities, and hence refusal of
entry into the United States, had proved to be incorrect. Mr. Wirgo
informed me that it was due to a misunderstanding on the part of
an agent who contemplated exporting Estonian shale oil to the United
States. Mr. Wirgo stated that shale oil had not been exported di-
rectly from Estonia to the United States, but that it had been shipped
largely to Germany, and also to Latvia, Finland, and the Scandi-
navian countries. I was also informed that the production of shale
oil in Estonia was less than 100,000 metric tons during 1936, but
that during 1937 it would probably be 125,000 tons and that the
Estonian production of shale oil would be considerably increased if
a bigger market could be found in the United States. Mr. Wirgo
stated that it was his understanding that shale oil came under the
United States Tariff classification of coal tar oil, and hence is free
of duty into the United States. He further stated that it would in-
terest the Estonian authorities to be assured that shale oil would re-
main on the free list, a feature they would like to have incorporated
in the treaty with the United States.
  The Department will be informed by cable as to the date when
the Estonian draft is received at the Tallinn Legation and when it
will be mailed to the Department.
  Respectfully yours,                        WALTER A. LEONARD
611.60i31/61a: Telegram
    The Secretary of State to the Charge in Estonia (Leonard)
                            WASHINGTON, April 23, 1937-6 p. m.
  3. Department desires from you suggestions by telegraph with
respect to tariff concessions that this Government should, in your

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