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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 269

suggested by the Department delivered today and will be given con-
sideration by the Foreign Office after Mr. Wirgo returns shortly from
                         __________________              LEONARD
         Report by the Vice Conul at Tallinn (Trimble)19
No. 52                                   TALLINN, April 30, 1937.
                                               [Received May 19.]
                  II. SUMMARY OF CONCLUSIONS
  Owing to the necessarily voluminous character of a report of this
nature, it would appear advisable to insert at this point a brief sum-
mary of the conclusions reached. Because of the excessively one-
sided nature of the mutual trade between United States and Estonia
(the balance of trade being greatly in favor of the United States)
the efforts of the Estonian Government to direct its imports, by
means of the exchange control and import license systems, toward na-
tions which are extensive purchasers of Estonian products, have cur-
tailed to a marked degree the volume of American shipments to this
country. Conversely, the exportation to Estonia of goods originat-
ing in the United Kingdom and Germany, the United States' prin-
cipal competitors in this market, has been assisted materially. While
these restrictions have always hampered the ability of American
firms to export goods to Estonia, their effect has been even more severe
in the past 16 months. This condition has arisen out of the unfavor-
able balance of Estonia's foreign trade resulting from a partial har-
vest failure in 1936 which has been accompanied by renewed efforts
on the part of the Est6nian Government to balance its foreign trade
on a bi-lateral basis. Thus while total Estonian imports in 1936
showed an increase in value of 26.3% in comparison with those made
in the previous year, the importation of American goods in the same
period exhibited a gain of but 1.7%o. Furthermore, although the
total importation from all countries in the first quarter of the current
year rose 18.3% over that for the corresponding period in 1936,
purchases of United States goods declined in value by 27.7%o.
  The character of the American export trade with Estonia has been
undergoing a change during the past several years. Manufactured
goods, which can generally be purchased elsewhere, are being imported
" Prepared in accordance with instruction No. 19, April 3, to the Minister
Riga; not printed.

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