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a nonpartisan body, nor any of the departments that you have enumerated, who so carefully examine any concession that is to be made before it is made—and to which you could have added the 0. P. A.; that is a new one in the list of those who consider what is to be done can be relied upon, because most of them have been appointed by President Roosevelt, and that poisons the whole program. That is the first proposition.
The next proposition is that ladies, economists, those engaged in exporting and importing, have no right to express an opinion about that matter, because they are not operating a business that is interested in being protected. The policy should be framed by those who have been getting protection and who want to continue to get protection, and others are either too ignorant of the problem to be entitled to an opinion or they are too impractical, from the standpoint of having successfully met a pay roll, to express opinion.
There was a third viewpoint expressed here very eloquently by Mr. Samuel Crowther, and that was to the effect that the only thing involved is trade, and anybody who says that trade has any bearing upon the attitude of one nation to another, that trade must be considered at any time in the light of the broader problem of foreign affairs, is dealing in emotionalism; that the only thing that counts is the dollars and cents of trade, and that emotionalism will lead us astray.
I understand you to say that your organization has very fully studied all the available information on this problem. There were differences of opinion between some members, but the majority of your organization took the position that you have outlined today as their position on the general policy?
Mrs. Wiley. That is correct. Mrs. Whitehurst is a very intelligent woman. She has culled the best she could get, and put it on the sheet of information, on the reciprocal trade agreements, and that has been sent to the 16,500 clubs, in an endeavor to inform them. I
you, sir, that we are not experts. However, we are taxpayers, and we are entitled to form the best opinion that we can, in order to carry the tremendous weight of this Government expense. We have tried to get the best experts we can. I am a Republican, have been all my life, and yet I have great respect for the State Department and Mr. Hull and his opinions. I feel that he is an expert on this matter. I look to him for advice and guidance.
We are not experts. We have to read the newspapers in order to be informed. We have done the best we could, and, as we are the taxpayers and the mothers and the wives of the men who are in trade, we are as much interested in the prosperity of the country as the men. I am sure you must admit that the wife of a man is just as interested in his prosperity as he is himself.
I will put this statement of Mrs. Whitehurst in the record, which gives the information broadcast throughout the country.
Mr. ROBERTSON. We will be glad to have it. (The document referred to is as follows:)
THE RECIPROCAL-TR IDE-AGREEMENTS PROCRAM
1. The reciprocal-trade-agreements program has been carried on for nearly 9 years under the authority of the Trade Agreements Act, which was passed
in 1934 and has twice been renewed by Congress, in 1937 and in 1910, for 3-year periods. That authority will expire June 12, 1943, unless again extended by Congress before that date.
2. Under the act, reciprocal trade agreements have been concluded with 26 countries—16 in the Western Hemisphere, 9 in Europe, and 1 in the Near East. Trade among trade-agreement countries normally constitutes about threefifths of total world trade and more than that proportion of United States
reig trade is carried on with trade-agreement countries.
3. The reciprocal-trade-agreements program has effectively assisted in increasing United States foreign trade by
(a) Inducing other countries to lower their tariffs and other barriers against imports of United States goods in return for (6) reduction of excessive United States tariffs against products of other countries which United States producers need and want, and guarantees of existing tariff rates or duty-free status of such products, which help to stabilize markets.
4. Results of tariff reductions and other concessions on United States.exports, obtained from other countries through trade agreements, include
(a) Larger and more profitable foreign markets for United States products, which ordinarily make up one-third of total United States exports.
(b) More employment and better incomes for United States workers and farmers who produce exportable goods.
(c) Better domestic markets for domestic products among American producers whose incomes have been improved by larger foreign markets for their products.
(d) Protection of United States products against tariff and other discriminations in almost all markets of the world, giving such products equal competitive footing in those markets,
5. Concessions made by the United States in agreements are
(a) Thoroughly studied by the Tariff Commission, the Departments of State, Agriculture, and Commerce, and other Government agencies concerned with foreign trade.
(b) Decided upon only after public hearings and full opportunity for all interested persons to present their views, only when reciprocal concessions are obtained in return, and only when they are in the interest of the United States economy as a whole.
6. Results of concessions made by the United States include:
(a) Increased supplies, at more reasonable prices, of foreign products required by American producers and consumers.
(0) More United States dollars in the hands of people in other countries who must have United States dollars for their purchases of American export products of farm, mine, and factory.
7. By giving fair and uniform trade treatment to all countries which do not discriminate against United States trade, the United States is able to demand and receive, in return, nondiscriminatory treatment of its own trade throughout most of the world, and also to avoid giving excuse for the trade wars that often precede military wars.
8. By adhering to a mutually helpful trade policy, the United States is better able to obtain and keep the contidence and the cooperation of the other nations associated with it in the war effort.
9. The Governments of the United States and those of a growing number of other nations of like mind are pledged in the Atlantic Charter and the mutual-aid agreements to seek to reduce trade barriers and to eliminate harmful trade discriminations for the purpose of expanding trade, employment, and purchasing power. The reciprocal-trade-agreements program is essential to the accomplishment of this purpose. Only through ability to exchange the products of their labor can all peoples achieve the maximum production and use of the goods "which are the material foundation of the liberty and welfare of all peoples.”
10. Lasting peace can be possible only when men in all countries are able to exchange the fruits of their own labor for the fruits of others' labor. No nation is or could be self-sufficient without tremendous sacrifices and without great harm to others. When trade between nations is destroyed or unreasonably restricted, living standards are lowered, poverty and bitterness follow, and wars threaten. The reciprocal-trade-agreements program moves in the opposite direction, toward greater prosperity here and elsewhere, thereby helping to lay a firma foundation for reliable and enduring peace.
Mr. ROBERTSON. Is it true that the members of your club, in addition to being taxpayers, are also consumers ?
Mrs. WILEY. Indeed, they are.
Mr. ROBERTSON. Are you concerned with what you have to pay for the things that you buy?
Mrs. WILEY. Of course we are. We are not selfish about it. We think
Mr. ROBERTSON. I heard a distinguished member of this committee say over the radio last night, as one objection to the trade-agreements program, that if we continued this trade-agreements law, somebody, after the war is over, might want to bring some raw rubber into this country again in competition with synthetic rubber.
If we drop this program and after the war is over the opponents of this program ask all of you ladies to pay $25 apiece for a $10 tire in order to protect an industry, will you sing to them, “Let me call you sweetheart"?
Mrs. WILEY. We won't buy the tire.
Mr. Robertson, from this speech of Mr. Sumner Welles, it shows that this reduction is not always a sweeping reduction. Sometimes it is a mere reduction of 5 percent. It may go down to a full 50 percent. All of these trade agreements are not a great reduction. That is the beauty of them. They are arrived at after careful consideration by experts, who make the least reduction possible. They can be abrogated after a number of years. They are not binding for all time. There is a provision that they shall cease if they are not successful.
Mr. ROBERTSON. That is all, Mr. Chairman.
Mrs. Wiley, you made a remark that has already been made. I want to read this into the record at this point.
Under the reductions made in these trade agreements on all phases of liquor—and I won't take the time of the committee to go into that-it certainly is a great thing for the consumers of this country, if I may speak a little sarcastically. In 1934 the imports of whisky were 5,616,000 gallons. In 1935 they were 5,834,000 gallons. In 1936 trade was picking up. It was 13,360,000 gallons. In 1937 it jumped to 14,329,000, and so on.
The CHAIRMAN. Are you through with the witness?
The CHAIRMAN. Thank you, Mrs. Wiley, for your very helpful statement.
The CHAIRMAN. The next witness is Clark H. Minor, chairman, foreign commerce department committee, Chamber of Commerce, Washington, D. C.
Mr. Minor, please identify yourself for the benefit of the record.
STATEMENT OF CLARK H. MINOR, CHAIRMAN, FOREIGN COM. MERCE DEPARTMENT COMMITTEE OF THE CHAMBER OF COMMERCE OF THE UNITED STATES
Mr. MINOR. I am Clark H. Minor, chairman of the foreign commerce department committee of the United States Chamber of Commerce. My residence is New York City.
In appearing before you today I do so as chairman of the foreign commerce department committee of the Chamber of Commerce of the United States. The chamber of commerce is a federation of some 1,800 businessmen's organizations in whose underlying membership there are more than a million businessmen. The foreign commerce department committee of the chamber is composed of men from various parts of the country experienced in international commerce and international affairs.
Since March 1933, more than a year before the enactment of the Trade Agreements Act on June 12, 1934, this committee of the chamber, and the chamber's membership generally, have taken an active interest in the general policy of negotiating trade agreements with foreign countries. On March 29, 1933, the foreign commerce department committee, then under the chairmanship of the late James A. Farrell, former president of the United States Steel Corporation, recommended that the chamber's membership urge that authority be provided to the treaty-making branch of the Government for initiating bargaining negotiations with foreign governments where such bargaining clearly would be in our national interest. This proposal was put to a vote of the chamber's twenty-first annual meeting in May 1933 and the membership supported the following resolution:
The safeguarding and advancement of our foreign trade should be the purposes of a vigorous foreign commercial policy of our Government. Adaptation of our American economic structure to present world conditions calls for most careful scrutiny of existing policies. Keeping in mind always the necessity of assuring stability to our internal industrial and agricultural enterprises, through reasonable protection for American industry, our Government should have power to initiate reciprocal tariff arrangements with foreign countries where such bargaining would be clearly in our national interest. Such agreements would complement our existing flexible tariff in establishing for our country a tariff policy fair alike to our home industry and our competitors abroad.
Mr. Farrell appeared before this committee and urged that this policy be written into law, at the time the original trade agreements legislation was the subject of hearings before your committee.
In March 1937 the foreign commerce department committee and the agricultural department committee of the chamber submitted to our board of directors a joint report with reference to “Imports and exports of agricultural products” in the course of which the two committees had the following to say with regard to reciprocal trade agreements:
In the endeavor of our country to open up additional world markets for American agricultural exports the tariff bargaining policy of the United States appears to be the most effective instrument at present at the disposal of our Government for making any substantial headway against the multitude of restrictions which have grown out the world depression and the uncertain political outlook in certain overseas areas. The committees therefore feel that the recent continuance of our Reciprocal Trade Agreements Act for a 3-year period is to be commended, provided that it is so administered as not to subject American agriculture to destructive competition.
Since the policies of the Chamber of Commerce of the United States have a 5-year life, the commitment with regard to reciprocal trade agreements, taken in 1933, expired in 1938. The membership of the chamber, gathered at the twenty-sixth annual meeting in May 1938 reiterated the chamber's position in the following words:
The negotiation of reciprocal trade agreements, to the extent that they are concluded without causing destructive competition for American agriculture and
industry, is a long step toward enlargement of American export trade and toward international acceptance of more reasonable commercial policies. In negotiating trade agreements our Government should endeavor particularly to obtain for industries which have been unable to regain their lost export trade by reason of foreign preferential tariffs such treatment that they may have a fair opportunity to resume their position in exports. Our Government's traditional policy of insisting upon equality of treatment with other nations in foreign countries should be maintained.
Since the 1938 policy expires this year, the Foreign Commerce Department Committee of the chamber has again surveyed this action of the membership and is submitting to the chamber's thirty-first annual meeting, April 27-29 of this year a recommendation that the following resolution be adopted :
Resolred, That the policy of the Trade Agreements Act should be continued, under which the Government would have adequate authority to negotiate and make effective agreements for the reciprocal and selective adjustment of tariffs and other barriers to trade, including quota restrictions, with adequate safeguards such as legislative provisions for ample public notice and open hearings, and clauses in the agreements providing for, in case of unforeseen developments, the modification or withdrawal of concessions in order to prevent serious injury to domestic producers. Negotiations in a program of reciprocal trade agreements should take into consideration the effects of customs duties, quotas, and exchange restrictions and all other obstacles to the reasonable flow of goods and services. Our Government's traditional policy of insisting upon equality of treatment with other nations in foreign countries should be maintained. A well balanced and enterprising international commerce, conducted on a fair and nondiscriminatory basis, will increase the purchasing power, and improve the standard of living of all parties concerned, and so will help to create the sound economic foundation indispensable for enduring peace.
In submitting this report the committee made the following observation :
In the opinion of your committee the trade agreements policy has been beneficial to the United States and has come to be regarded, throughout the world, as the symbol of the desire on the part of our Nation to build a world economy based on fairer treatment of commerce and thus to help eliminate economic causes that might disturb international relations. You committee therefore urges extension of the trade agreements authority in order that the United States may have available, during the war and after its conclusion, effective means to support a more reasonable and less restricted international commercial policy.
I should like to submit for the record a copy of this report which is concurred in by all but one of the 20 members of the foreign commerce department committee. Dr. Elvin H. Killheffer, legal department, E. 1. du Pont de Nemours & Co., Inc., Wilmington, Del., and chairman of the executive committee of the American Tariff League, who is a member of our committee, does not concur in the report of the committee, in view of the fact that he favors an alternate proposal.
The CHAIRMAN. Without objection, the copy of the report which you wish to be inserted in the record will be inserted in the record at This point.
(The report referred to is as follows:)
TRADE AGREEMENTS ACT
This report of the Foreign Commerce Department Committee is in order for
consideration by the Chamber's Annual Meeting, April 27–29, 1943 In placing this report before the membership the Board of Directors has taken no action, either for itself or for the Chamber, upon the report or any recommendations in it. Only the vote of the member organizations through their delegates at the annual meeting or by referendum can commit the Chamber for or against