I should be grateful if you would prepare a memorandum on this subject for the Minister to
send to the Prime Minister.
You will be aware that the Minister of Agriculture, in a letter to Mr.Smith of the
6 of August, rejected out-of-hand a proposal that Canada give NewZealand a very modest quota of
cheese imports, and Mr.Fleming subsequently reported at a meeting of the Cabinet Committee
on the Commonwealth Trade and Economic Conference that neither he nor the Minister of Trade
and Commerce felt in a position to pursue this matter further with Mr.Harkness. Ihave been
very disturbed by the possibility that the mild, but obviously seriously considered, representations
received from the NewZealand Government on this matter may be met with a flat negative. The
consequences of such action on our relations with NewZealand, in my opinion, are bound to be
serious. Of more immediate importance is the probable consequence for the Commonwealth
Trade and Economic Conference. If we are unable to give the NewZealanders any satisfaction
whatsoever on the issues they have raised with us, not only is it impossible that we should expect
any trade concessions from them, but they may well be in such a mood as to take a very
disruptive stand at the Conference.
This is a matter of such importance that Ithink it must be brought to the Prime Minister's
attention. In many ways, it would be best, Ithink, if Mr.Fleming were to raise it with the Prime
Minister; but we know from Mr.Plumptre that such action is, unfortunately, out of the question. I
doubt, however, whether our Minister need feel under the same inhibition. We in this
Department also have the advantage of having brought the NewZealand representations to the
attention of the Prime Minister and of having been informed that he wishes to be kept up-to-date
on this matter (see the note on Mr.Smith's memorandum to him of the 30 of June). Ihave
discussed with Mr.Plumptre the possibility of Mr.Smith re-opening with the Prime Minister the
decision taken by Mr.Harkness, and Mr.Plumptre very much hopes that it may be possible for
our Minister to do so. Accordingly, as Istated at the outset, Ishould be glad if you would prepare
for me a memorandum for Mr.Smith to send to Mr.Diefenbaker. It should be in strong terms
and should describe fairly bluntly the consequences as we see them for our relations with New
Zealand and for the success of the Commonwealth Trade and Economic Conference, if Mr.
Harkness's present attitude is allowed to prevail. Ithink it would not be amiss either to refer in
the memorandum to Mr.Diefenbaker's forthcoming Commonwealth tour and to the
representations he will certainly receive in Wellington on this subject, if the Canadian
Government continues to exclude from the Canadian market NewZealand's principal export
102 Le 28 mai 1957, le
Cabinet a ordonné que le fromage cheddar soit placé sur la liste de marchandises
d'importation contrôlées jusqu'au 31 mai 1958. Le 29 mai 1958, les contrôles des importations sur le fromage
cheddar ont été prolongés pour une autre année.
On May 28, 1957, Cabinet directed that cheddar cheese be placed on the import control list until May 31, 1958.
On May 29, 1958, the import controls on cheddar cheese were extended for an additional year.