President Ford–Ambassador Sir Peter Ramsbotham memcon (January 22, 1975)
THE WHITE HOUSE
MEMORANDUM OF CONVERSATION
Dr. Henry A. Kissinger, Secretary of State and Assistant to the President for National Security Affairs
|DATE AND TIME:||Wednesday - January 22, 1975|
|PLACE:||The Oval Office|
The White House
President: You can see my wife made a few changes in the interim [in the Oval Office.] It is nice to see you.
Ramsbotham: The last time I was here with Heath, and then also with Callaghan.
Let me say, first: Mrs. Wilson will be able to come. They will go to Canada on Wednesday and then come down here. Mrs. Callaghan can't come.
President: Mrs. Ford will be pleased to hear that Mrs. Wilson will be coming.
Ramsbotham: Harold Lever will come.
President: Who is he?
Ramsbotham: He is an adviser attached to the Prime Minister's Office. He handles the oil negotiations with the United States.
The Prime Minister congratulates you on your State of the Union message. He especially likes the part on the reduction of consumption and cooperation and the part on combatting recession. The energy problem will be more difficult to cope with.
President: You are very fortunate yourselves. You have relief in sight -- in the North Sea.
Ramsbotham: But in the short term we have a problem. We plan to cut consumption by 7 percent.
Kissinger: Some of that is caused by recession.
Ramsbotham: That's true.
President: You have a better mass transportation system, without the distances we have like in the Midwest.
Ramsbotham: We are keen to go into cooperation with you on developing alternative sources and measures to reduce consumption.
Kissinger: The British have been very helpful on all the energy matters.
Ramsbotham: Our interests are identical. We have to be more careful because we are more vulnerable -- geographically and financially.
President: When will your oil start to come in?
Ramsbotham: It starts about half in '77. We hope to have the full load by '80 -- if the negotiation goes well.
Kissinger: And when Great Britain joins OPEC.... [Laughter.]
Ramsbotham: My main purpose in coming in today is to ask: would it be agreeable for the Queen and the Duke of to visit in 1976?
President: Unequivocally yes. It would be a great moment in our history.
Ramsbotham: We couldn't come before July and she has to be in Canada by the 17th for the opening of the Olympic Games. She would hope to be here either on the 4th or between that and the 17th.
President: I don't have any precise plans yet, but I will review the plans in prospective and I will get back to you.
Ramsbotham: I know some people think you might not want to share the 4th....
President: My initial reaction is it would be very appropriate.
Ramsbotham: The Queen's feeling is that the 4th would be ideal but only if it were bilateral.
President: With the relations between us, I think there is no doubt about a bilateral arrangement.
Ramsbotham: On the Prime Minister's meeting, the Prime Minister would like to propose that you have some minutes together before joining the others. He would also like to propose that the general meeting be small. We would probably propose that there be Callaghan, Sir John Hunt, me and a notetaker. Is that about the right number? If there are only three, it would be Sir John.
President: We will let you know. I have had two phone conversations with Wilson, the last one to congratulate him on his election.
Ramsbotham: He is looking forward to these talks. The first day he would propose to have general talks, then to discuss the European Community and bilateral matters.