Page images

research stations or laboratories and the means of financial support therefor." 1

The general plan of the conference was for a series of round-table discussions, the basis for which in each case was fully prepared in advance, including statistical summaries of crops, of international trade in the chief agricultural products, and other data. The program for the conference comprised three divisions: agro-technique, agricultural economics, and the control and prevention of animal diseases and pests.



AFTER A LAPSE of 12 years, the Second Inter-American Conference on Agriculture met at a time when the United States and a majority of the Latin American nations found themselves jointly involved in a war of world-wide dimensions. Because of this all-compelling fact, the conference presented an opportunity for collective consideration of problems of procurement and supply of agricultural products essential to the war effort and to minimum civilian requirements. Supplies of rubber, medicinal plants, insecticides, certain fibers, and vegetable oils were critically short because of early Japanese successes in Asia and in the Southwest Pacific. The American nations, in the conference at Mexico City in 1942, agreed to undertake jointly all possible measures to assure adequate supplies of these critical commodities to meet the war requirements of the United Nations.

These problems of a war-emergency character gave the Second Inter-American Conference on Agriculture a stronger political tone than its predecessor, and led to the adoption of many resolutions in the economic and political realms. Nonetheless, the conference was primarily technical in nature, adopting a number of resolutions dealing with agricultural matters of a technical character.



RESOLUTION LX of the Second Inter-American Conference on Agriculture recommended that the Governing Board of the Pan American Union, after making studies and consultations which they deemed advisable, determine the place, program, and date for the Third Inter-American Conference on Agriculture. The so-called Permanent Committee or Interim Committee of the Second Conference, which had its seat in Mexico City, considered it advisable before dissolving

1 Documentary Material on the Inter-American Conference on Agriculture, Forestry, and Animal Industry, U.S. Government Printing Office, Washington, D.C., 1930, p. 7.

to utilize its accumulated experience by submitting recommendations to the Pan American Union concerning an agenda for the Third Conference. The Secretary of Agriculture, Claude R. Wickard, was the American member of the Permanent Committee, with the United States Agricultural Attaché at México, D.F., Lester D. Mallory, serving as his alternate. Marte R. Gómez, Mexican Secretary of Agriculture and Chairman of the Permanent Committee, informally requested through the American Embassy the views of the United States Government on this important question. Accordingly, a statement containing the suggestions of this Government was prepared and submitted to the Pan American Union.

Late in the fall of 1944, after having received suggestions concerning the agenda from a number of the member governments, including those transmitted through the Permanent Committee in Mexico City, the Pan American Union drafted a project of program for the conference. The Committee on Agricultural Cooperation of the Union, composed of the Ambassadors of Costa Rica, Uruguay, and Venezuela and the Chargé d'Affaires of Colombia, submitted their project of program to the Governing Board for its approval. The committee further recommended that this program be transmitted to the respective governments for study and approval, after the receipt of which the Governing Board might draft its definite program for the conference. The Governing Board, in its regular meeting on December 6, 1944, adopted the project of program as submitted by the committee and in accordance with the committee's recommendation submitted it to the respective governments, requesting comments not later than January 31, 1945, in order that the definite program for the conference could be adopted in the regular session of the Governing Board in February 1945.

The only government which submitted suggestions for modification was the United States, and its suggestions were of a minor character. All of these suggestions were accepted by the Governing Board of the Pan American Union, and the final agenda for the conference was adopted at its meeting on February 7, 1945. A copy of this agenda is attached as Appendix B.


PREPARATORY work of an informal character was carried on in the Department of Agriculture prior to the formal adoption of the agenda by the Governing Board of the Pan American Union at its session on February 7. Shortly thereafter, recognizing the necessity for a more firm and formal arrangement within the Department for the compre

hensive preparatory work considered necessary, the Secretary of Agriculture and the War Food Administrator jointly issued General Departmental Circular No. 63 announcing the establishment of an interbureau committee within the Department for this purpose.

The committee met at frequent intervals. Early in its work, it determined that the activities to be undertaken by the committee should be treated under four distinct headings: the preparation of factual statements and background materials pertaining to the subjects covered in the agenda; the assembly of suitable reference works which would serve as a working library for the Delegation and for the conference as a whole; the preparation of preliminary drafts of resolutions which might be advanced by the United States Delegation; and finally, the submittal of suggestions regarding the composition of the United States Delegation. In the months that followed, each of these tasks was carried to completion.

The initial proposal regarding the composition of the United States Delegation was submitted by the Secretary of Agriculture to the Secretary of State on February 17. A number of additions to the proposed delegation were subsequently made by joint consultation and agreement between the Departments of State and Agriculture. For the final list of the United States Delegation which actually attended the conference, see the Final Act, attached as Appendix F.

Upon the advice of the Embassy, it was predetermined that the Delegation should plan to be self-sufficient, so far as its secretarial requirements were concerned. Three interpreter-translators and six typist-stenographers were included in the staff, together with an administrative assistant to exercise direct charge of the technical operations of the secretariat. The designation of three secretaries to the Delegation, from the Embassy, the Department of State, and the Department of Agriculture, permitted special attention with regard to matters relating to the Embassy and other local arrangements; transportation, passports, finances, and other details of an administrative character; and matters of content and substance.


ALL 21 MEMBER governments of the Pan American Union were represented when the Third Inter-American Conference on Agriculture convened at Caracas, Venezuela, on July 24, 1945.1 Ministers of Agriculture headed the delegations from seven countries-Bolivia, Costa Rica, Cuba, Guatemala, Mexico, Panama, and Venezuela—

1 A translation of the text of the invitation by the Venezuelan Government to the Third Inter-American Conference on Agriculture and the letter of acceptance by the Government of the United States of America are attached as Appendix A.

while Colombia's delegation chairman was her Minister of Economy. In addition to the Pan American Union, five other international organizations were represented, including the Permanent Council of American Associations of Commerce and Production, the International Labor Organization, the United Nations Interim Commission on Food and Agriculture, the United Nations Relief and Rehabilitation Administration, and the Inter-American Statistical Institute.

In all, 218 persons participated officially in the conference, exclusive of the central secretariat provided by the host government, Venezuela. Among the larger delegations were Argentina with 44; the United States, 40; Venezuela, 28; Mexico, 13; Costa Rica, 10; and Cuba, 8. These totals include the secretariat. The complete list of delegations is in the Final Act attached as Appendix F.


IN A PREPARATORY session held on July 23, the conference approved the Rules of Procedure (copy attached as Appendix C), accepted the report of the Committee on Credentials, drew lots for the order of precedence, designated officers of the conference, and elected the presidents and vice presidents of the technical commissions.

In accordance with the Rules of Procedure, the order of precedence of delegations was decided by the duplicate drawing of lots, the first determining the precedence among those delegations headed by cabinet ministers, and the second that of all other delegations. The complete order of precedence as established by drawing of lots was as follows:

[blocks in formation]

The officers of the conference, designated by acclamation, were President-Angel Biaggini, Venezuelan Minister of Agriculture and Animal Husbandry; Vice President (in accordance with the Rules of Procedure)-Roberto Guirola M., Minister of Agriculture and Chairman of the Delegation of Guatemala; Secretary General-Manuel

Arocha. These three constituted the Board of Directors of the conference. In accordance with article 11 of the Rules of Procedure, six technical commissions were established corresponding to the main sections of the agenda. In the preparatory session of July 23, the presidents and vice presidents of the six commissions were elected, and the rapporteurs were subsequently elected.

In addition to the six technical commissions, there were also organized a Commission on Resolutions, composed of the chairmen of all delegations, together with the officers of the conference; and a Committee on Style, composed of Jorge Carrera Andrade of Ecuador as president, and Rafael García Mata of Argentina and Arturo Morales Flores of Costa Rica as members. L. A. Wheeler of the United States Delegation was elected rapporteur of the Commission on Resolutions.


EARLY IN THE sessions of the technical commissions, it became evident that it would be necessary to establish subcommissions if the work of the conference was to terminate on schedule. Accordingly, the following subcommissions were established:

Commission I:

Subcommission 1-Money and Agriculture
Subcommission 2-Agricultural Credit

Commission II:

Subcommission 1-International Trade Commodities
Subcommission 2-War Stimulated Commodities
Subcommission 3-International Commodity Measures

Commission III:

Subcommission 1-Nutrition

Subcommission 2-Soils and Climate

Subcommission 3-Engineering

Subcommission 4-Agricultural Extension, Education, and Plant

Subcommission 5-Animal Production and Sanitation

Subcommission 6-Plant Pathology

Subcommission 7-Forestry

Commission IV:

Subcommission 1-Commerce and Economy

Subcommission 2-Classification and Standardization of Agri

cultural Products

Subcommission 3-Transportation Rates

« ՆախորդըՇարունակել »