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Radio television at the University of Texas presents the Yankee dollar. The Yankee dollar. What is it Bud. What will it buy. Radio television. The University of Texas in cooperation with the National Association of educational broadcasters invites you to tour Mexico with Richard Ariano as he talks to political leaders and to voters to management and to labor to rich to poor to the people of Mexico. One thing will guide these conversations. What is the American dollar bought south of our border. What can it buy. And above all what image of us is our money creating. American money finds its way into Latin American countries in different ways. Cheap of
these are through foreign aid. The federal dollars through money spent by vacationers the tourist dollar and through money invested by businessmen. The company dollar is the channels through which our money flows or fails to flow affect the image it creates. It is interesting and perhaps revealing to discover the extent to which the average Mexican or the average American is or is not aware of US federal money going into Mexico to bring us closer to this awareness. Mr Ariano spoke with Mr William Rogers Jr. director of our TAC the regional technical aid Center for Latin America in Mexico City. There is a recording of that interview. I'm talking with Mr. William E. Wright you do it you who is director of the you know technical aid Center for Latin America. Already as it is more commonly known architect. I think is within the agency for International Development but it is a regional program. The first question I'd like to ask you
Mr. Rajiv is just what is art today. Why attack is at center here in Mexico City which was created to overcome the insufficient supply of high quality technical material in Spanish. That is currently available to the technical professional and academic community of Latin America. In 1957 when the agency was created the only thing which really was done was the translation and production of government produced publications U.S. government printing produce publications. But now we carry on to programs. Which are interrelated to some extent. And the first is to supply materials which are needed by the various missions and Spanish speaking countries. For example if we have a program dedicated to the cultivation of potatoes and in Peru we might then be asked by that mission to undertake the translation of production of booklets produced by the
US Department of Agriculture on potato growing and control of insect pests as we go as potato crops and so forth. We also do the same thing with films as we do with booklets and panels. Actually the film end of it is not as large as our publication division simply because we are limited in the number of films which can be adapted readily to Latin American needs. The second part of the programme is to stimulate Latin American publishers. By underwriting small quantities 500 to a thousand copies. Of commercially feasible technical books. In doing this we help get into the roles of the publishing houses material which is needed in Spanish but which the publishers could not undertake on their own because of the small market for this sort of thing here in Spanish speaking Latin America.
Was this program their architect program set up at the time that the Alliance for Progress was initiated. Or is it a development on earlier occasions. You know as I told you it was created in 56 or 57. And it actually wasn't set up specifically for the Ali answer however since the inception of the Alianza the program has grown to a great degree and the commercial part of the program has gone on of the Alianza and it has become one of the most important parts of the program. We carry on here is the demand for your publications continually increasing or is it as a relatively stable level. No it's continually increasing. People within the missions and people outside of our own government agencies. Are becoming more and more aware of the materials that we produce and the demand is steadily increasing. In fact this year we will probably do in actual
numbers of copies about four times the amount of business. If I can use that term in government activity four times the amount of business that we've done in previous years. The only limitation of course is how much work we can do here with the facilities that exist in Mexico and other countries in Latin America. While Mexico and Argentina have developed publishing industries and develop the film industry and I use these two countries outside of Brazil because we Brazil demands Portuguese rather than Spanish. Within those countries we have developed publishing industries and we have developed film industry so that we can use their facilities. But how much body and we can produce is a question us I ask carries on a different type of programme and valving involving informational subjects rather than technical ones so we are both using these facilities and. You can only go so far with what we have.
It was Roger I'd like to return for just a minute. To this point of the business of book publishing one of the more frequent criticisms that is heard of the translation or not the not necessarily the translation but of the distribution of these translated books in Latin America is that their cost is prohibitive to those that most need them. Now does your agency have any method of alleviating this or reducing the cost to those persons It might not otherwise be able to buy the book. If it were handled on a purely commercial venture or as on a put on a purely commercial basis. One of the purposes of having a regional center of this kind is to combine the needs of all countries. So that when we do produce a book we can produce it in a larger quantity. And but manufacturing books is like anything else. The price depends on the number that you can produce. If you make a model
for a piece of metal work for example the cost of that mold has to be divided over the number of units that you produce from that model. And it's the same way with a book when you start out on a book you have to do a translation you have to pay for rights. You have to set type. You have to do art and you have to make plates and all of those costs amount to a large proportion of the cost of the book. Now before you go to press. All of these quests are what we call a next quest in the books business. Then there are white costs which are running costs of ink paper and press time. And the reason that we can produce books more cheaply in the United States than in many other countries is because we have a large market so that acts Quest is divided over the number of copies that we produce if you produce 100000 copies of a book that are saying and you can divide the X costs by 100000 and you can see
that this would reduce the cost the pre-publication cost accruing to each copy by a tremendous amount. But still even with combined production which is facilitated by a center the market for technical books in Spanish is quite small. There are only a very small number of individuals that can use these books. As a consequence a publisher can only afford to produce what he thinks he can sell and as a consequence again he can only divide those pre-publication costs over a smaller number of copies than we ordinarily would produce in the States. I hope I've made this clear because it's a very important point. People generally feel that the answer to the book gap problem if there is a book gap problem here and I assure you there is one is in bringing out low cost paperback books or books are only low cost if you can produce them in volume. The fact that they are bound in
paper is not really. A major cost reduction factor. The difference between binding a book in paper and binding a book in a cloth and board here in Mexico is only five and a half pesos which amounts to somewhere close to 44 cents and on technical books even if they're not bound which are worth anywhere between $5 and $25 a copy you can see that that forty four cents is not a big item. The only time becomes an item of any importance is when you're producing books in the hundreds of thousands of millions. The pocket book sort of thing that we have in the States which share involves more popular material. Even there we cannot produce low cost technical books as such. Is there any way that your agency can be subsidized directly by the United States government with the firm purpose of lowering the cost of these books of
artificially lowering the cost that this would be an uneconomic to to a degree because the only books that would be affected by this would be the ones which we helped produce here in Latin America. So the publisher who wanted to produce a book on his own could not not match our price. As a consequence we would inject into the situation A. Modicum of unfair competition. It would not lower the overall range of books. So what I think we should do is continue along the line that we have been operating by expanding our distribution of free copies up until now we have been sponsoring our commercial books by getting a publisher pre-publication waiver of about five hundred and fifty copies to a thousand copies. These We distributed to the missions and they were given out very judiciously through the
book using institutions of one type or another. This year we are expanding this distribution. We are giving these books as they come out to as many libraries as feasible as many universities as are feasible and we are selecting these on a scientific basis. It might be thought that this would also represents some sort of an unfair competitive situation to the publisher but the fact remains that in Latin America libraries and other institutions which use books have little or no budget to purchase books. So it does not represent a buying market for the publisher as of now. For example we have a count of institutions that are interested in medical books and we know exactly where they go. We have the names and addresses of every one of them. We know we have it where they us have a use.
We know the individuals connected with these institutions and in total number they run about fourteen hundred this plus some distribution which is handled by the missions on individual basis gives us a print run on a medical book now about 700 that we can use. Or gain useful distribution. Mr. Rogers could you tie together for us that connection that our time has with the training program of the Agency for International Development. Is it a formal connection or is it merely a cooperative. We are in true formally connected with all the programs which are carried out in Latin America in that every one of our missions is given a budget for uncut materials which we keep in escrow for them and which we charge against when missions order books.
Now the training operation or operations of any mission are a big part of the attack activity for instance in the field of vocational training. We have produced or helped produce over 35 publications in a special series called Adele my series. These are books which are used in high schools and even to high levels. Monterey the tactical technical institute Monterey one of the finest schools in Latin America. For example is carrying on a vocational training program at the college level now. We asked the training offices of every mission to suggest titles for translation. Naturally and I would say that 50 percent of the business we do throughout tact involves training operations in one kind of know. Although your
agency's name indicates that it is concerned with technical publications do you publish anything in the social sciences only economics. We touch on that field because it is related to government budgeting and public administration. If you consider Business Administration a social science yes we are in it and education naturally. But we do not enter into what such fields as sociology and I reckon amik books are almost purely theoretical at a very high level. The university materials more than they are anything else. Do you plan to expand this program at all. There are so many needs for for all different kinds of technical materials in Latin America. We can only go so far in any one field. We try and keep a level on each one of the fields wherein I might mention those fields of
fight if I may. If I get my catalogue out here I can list them for you. Rather succinct order. We deal in the following. Agriculture public health education public administration Business Administration industry economic development and science we also do some public safety material because we have many such programs throughout Latin America now where there are divisions in each one of these fields and each one is almost of equal importance so we cannot stress any one of them too strongly. However us I guess is in the field of economics especially in the field of economics in the United States. So between us we do cover the field quite well. Mr. Rogers could you give us a specific example of how you materials are used. When arresting out early enough a few months ago we delved
into this subject and we asked the missions to send in case histories of success stories and use of RTC materials and ideas. The report from Columbia I'll just take excerpts from a case one several months ago U.S. aid furnished a copy over of plant requirements which is a report that RTC has done recently done in English and we translate it into Spanish and it involves how to set up plants in about two hundred twenty different fields and how the report goes on. This report was given to a manufacturer of absorbent cotton and there we are informed that the company involved is not producing absorbent cotton. In about three times the volume that had been the case before and this is due in part if not in whole to RTA see that the ITC publication which we gave.
He's on another case in August. 1060 USA cooperated with the industrialists of many lean to organize Colombia's Free School of Business Administration and finance technical assistance also included the establishment of a library for the school. Sig sufficient funds were not available at the outset to provide textbooks for students. But the RTC publications furnished became essential reference material for the faculty which enabled the school to initiate its course of study on the basis of up to date text material. Here is another case and I have Columbia Columbia's giant steel steel mill is located near. I can't read this I think it's a belly seat though. A small city remote from the principal centers of population. Workers have been recruited from the nearby communities and consist largely of Colombians
of Indian origin. When I T A C publications were made available pas Del Rio instituted a comprehensive program and tour of training for its workers supervisors and middle management personnel. Personnel relations and productivity is said to have improved as a result of this training programme which to a large measure was the pendent on the use of the TS matters. So in other words you do have a very keen sense of the accomplishment of the translation and distribution of these materials throughout Latin America as accomplished. It's a difficult thing to measure I'm sure but nevertheless I think that most of my radio listeners could see the extreme importance of translating and distributing this heretofore and accessible technical material. Mr Ariano next spoke with Mr John W. Johnston Jr. director of the
Agency for International Development. Mr. Johnson the first question I'd like to ask you is. I'm afraid a loaded one. What do you think that the Mexican view of the Alliance for Progress. Well I'd like to answer that question by going back a little ways to the early days of the alliance. And. Trying to describe what I thought at that time was Mexico's attitude as to what they thought they thought the alliance was. I think in the early days of the alliance there was a a misconception. And I also feel that this misconception was rather strong in Mexico. That this was our program that it was a U.S. program. This certainly is not true. In the
early days of my tour here in Mexico the feeling of the contacts the people that we worked with in the Alliance for Progress with Mexico led me to believe that they felt the United States was doing the Alliance for Progress program. As strictly a U.S. entity since that time and with closer relationships with our Mexican counterparts I think that there is a realization that the Alliance for Progress is exactly what the words say. Consequently the program has changed in concept radically from the early days of the charter appointed LSD. I'll use an example of this in the past we have had here in Mexico a
technical assistance program. When I say technical assistance I mean we gave assistance to Mexico in the form of technicians. We are now phasing out this part of the Alliance for Progress program because Mexico has given priorities in the alliance to capital development projects. And therefore I feel and have felt that technical assistance as such is not needed in Mexico. They feel that they have adequate technicians to to run the portion of the program that they are committed to. They feel that they have enough adequately trained technicians in Mexico to do the agricultural credit program except right. This may be so and time will tell. But in any event we are now
concentrating on the projects that Mexico has given priority to as per the charter pointed LSD. In the processing of the projects as they are developing in capital development type projects Mexico is showing a keener desire to participate and to pursue the true spirit of the alliance. And I now feel that they the Mexicans realize that this is not a 100 percent US program or project but it is partly theirs. In fact a major portion of it is there's cooperation at the moment is splendid and I think we can get something done together. Mr. Johnson would you mind tracing for us what you believe the development of the project are of the Agency's program in Mexico. We look like to say at the end of next year in other words how will you be broken
down. Well Mexico has done an excellent job. Of gearing itself to its commitments as per the charter appointed LSD. Upon returning from Order go I. They started immediately in preparing their plan. Now one of their committing one of the commitments of each country that pointed LSD was that they would return to their respective countries and develop a plan of economic and social development. Mexico is working on this plan. The members of the Planning Commission worked very closely with our staff on the Alliance for Progress. Consequently the first priority established on the Mexican plan are within the Mexican plan is supervised agricultural
credit. We sign a loan agreement with Mexico for 20 million dollars. For the first year of the supervised agricultural credit. This is a rather unique program or project as it may be called because it is a re discounting process through the commercial banks and the loan gets to the farmer at 6 percent. I call this a unique project because it does not involve the Mexican government. The only role the Mexican government plays in this specific project is that the money is deposited through the official entity the national finance the air into the Bank of Mexico and handled by the fund on the ground in TVA which in turn obligates them loans out to the commercial banks.
This has been our first step into capital development type projects with Mexico. The next priority. We feel will be in the field of loans to private enterprise. How this project will work I am not able to say at this moment because we are working closely with the Mexican Planning Commission in developing this project. It may turn out to be a project similar to the one that I just described. It may be a supervised industrial credit program. What we're looking for is the mechanism to satisfy the criteria of the Alliance for Progress and of our own and Id office in Washington. Plus what Mexico can contribute as their portion to the alliance. Therefore I foresee by the end of this next fiscal year. That our alliance for progress
program in Mexico and within this alliance the AI office in Mexico will be probably a very small staff geared to lower ends of the kind that I just mentioned. Capital development loans with very little technical assistance involved. And if any technical assistance is involved it will be in the form of consultants in order to facilitate the loan. Mr. Johnson Radio-TV Texas thank you for a very informed. This has been another in the series of interviews conducted by Richard Ariano in Mexico. Mr. Ariano has been talking with Mr. William J Rogers Jr. director of the regional technical aid Center for Latin America and to Mr. John W. Johnston Jr. director of the Agency for International Development.
The Yankee dollar was produced by RCA Norris and directed by BW Crocker at radio television the University of Texas under a grant in aid from the National Association of educational broadcasters. This is the end of the Radio Network.
The yankee dollar
Capital development
Producing Organization
University of Texas
KUT (Radio station : Austin, Tex.)
Contributing Organization
University of Maryland (College Park, Maryland)
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Episode Description
This program focuses on American federal money going in to Mexico to aid in development. Guests are: William Rogers, director, Regional Technical Aid Center for Latin America, Mexico City; and John W. Johnston, Jr., director, AID, Mexico City.
Series Description
A documentary series on impact of U.S. dollar on Latin America, especially Mexico. Ther series is hosted by Richard Arellano.
Broadcast Date
Global Affairs
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Director: Crocker, B.W.
Host: Arellano, Richard G.
Interviewee: Rogers, William A.
Interviewee: Johnston, John W.
Producer: Norris, R.C.
Producing Organization: University of Texas
Producing Organization: KUT (Radio station : Austin, Tex.)
AAPB Contributor Holdings
University of Maryland
Identifier: 64-6-7 (National Association of Educational Broadcasters)
Format: 1/4 inch audio tape
Duration: 00:28:54
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Chicago: “The yankee dollar; Capital development,” 1964-01-23, University of Maryland, American Archive of Public Broadcasting (GBH and the Library of Congress), Boston, MA and Washington, DC, accessed December 4, 2023,
MLA: “The yankee dollar; Capital development.” 1964-01-23. University of Maryland, American Archive of Public Broadcasting (GBH and the Library of Congress), Boston, MA and Washington, DC. Web. December 4, 2023. <>.
APA: The yankee dollar; Capital development. Boston, MA: University of Maryland, American Archive of Public Broadcasting (GBH and the Library of Congress), Boston, MA and Washington, DC. Retrieved from