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The President's News Conference

May 01, 1931

INTERNATIONAL CHAMBER OF COMMERCE

THE PRESIDENT. I haven't anything of news character today at all. There are some matters in the background of the meeting of the International Chamber of Commerce that may be of interest to you, but I have no statement to make either direct or indirect--simply for your own information.

There are a great many distinguished men coming to that conference, and it is likely to be a very illuminating session on the whole question of the business depression and international relations that have grown out of it--international economic relations. We are hoping to give them a very warm welcome. The American businessmen are making large preparations for their reception, and we are all in hopes that they will develop valuable discussions--and I believe they will.

That body has accomplished a great deal in matters that are sometimes regarded as of secondary importance in international economic relations, but they have served to promote a great many things that have a great value--problems of double taxation, handling of international air transport, commercial arbitration in its international phases, reduction of red tape in handling of international trade through customs regulations, and scores of problems of that kind. They have made a very profound accomplishment. They will no doubt discuss--and I have a question or two here that raises it in my own mind--problems of international finance. They have on their programs the question of silver and international loans. And I wanted you to know for your own information that there is no change in the policy of the American Government in respect to our international debt. That subject may be up for discussion. I don't know how far they will get with it. Some of the papers that have been submitted do enter upon that subject.

Further than that I don't see any news openings for you for the end of this week.

QUESTIONS

Q. Mr. President, are you going to let us have these remarks of yours ?

THE PRESIDENT. No, I am giving you this as background only.

Q. I thought it might help a little in the foreground.

THE PRESIDENT. No.

Q. Mr. President, could you give us any guidance as to the American attitude on proposals to restore international prosperity by currency control, such as spoken of in the British press a good deal--through the central banks ?

THE PRESIDENT. Our policy in that matter is not changed at all. You know the attitude we have taken about it. We are glad to cooperate, but we have no governmental connection with it.

Q. Mr. President, when will your speech be available ?

THE PRESIDENT. I don't know. I have tried to get a minute to do it. I have dictated three or four pages, and that is as far as I have got. It is very short. It will be confined to words of welcome and two or three serious subjects. But it will not be a document that will require any great telegraphic space.

Note: President Hoover's one hundred and eighty-ninth news conference was held in the White House at 4 p.m. on Friday, May 1, 1931.
The Sixth General Congress of the International Chamber of Commerce met from May 4 to May 9, in Washington, D.C.

Herbert Hoover, The President's News Conference Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project https://www.presidency.ucsb.edu/node/212445

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