Post WWI Soviet economy by republic

Discussions on the economic history of the nations taking part in WW2, from the recovery after the depression until the economy at war.
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Post WWI Soviet economy by republic

Post by hselassi » 08 Apr 2018 04:40

I was trying to figure out what the Soviet economy would look like if Brest-Litovsk had held (loss of Baltics, Ukraine, and the Transcaucasus), but could not find any worthwhile information through google (I would assume it might exist in Russian). I gave the What-If section a try, but nobody seemed willing to play. So I am reworking it as a factual question for this area.
Here goes:
Is there a site in English that breaks down the post WWI Soviet economy (food/industrial production, GDP, etc.) by republic? Or can someone share that information if they have it?
I am looking for as much of the interwar period as possible, but at least the 1918-1928 period (War Communism & NEP).


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Re: Post WWI Soviet economy by republic

Post by South » 08 Apr 2018 09:14

Good morning Hselassi,

You present a real interesting subject and I've like to help but do not believe I can.

There is no reliable information from the early years.....and even the WWII and post-war years requires "readjusting" the numbers to reflect such matters as changes in pricing.

I believe Brest-Litovsk recognized an independent Ukraine. There are implications to Brest-Litovsk when Germany surrendered. One implication was who/how would Czarist-incurred debts get paid. I mention this because economic production and the sales must factor this in.

To look at the economy of the new Soviet Union requires adding the Rapallo treaty (16 April 1922)to the economic scene. Rapallo, a tangent to the Genoa Conference (where France demanded the new SU accept Czarist debts) informally developed the later secret military agreement between Germany and the SU. Again, the implications must be understood before looking at the production cost and export sale price of a bushel of rye or a ton of petroleum.

At the time, besides the Russian SSR, there was Ukraine (at least on paper ?), Belarus (White Russia), Armenia, Georgia, Azerbaijhan and the Far East Republic.

The new Soviet Union started the manufacture of their AK-1 transport aircraft as early as 1923. I cannot envision the monoplane's service outside of the Russian SSR having any economic activity reflected in the accounts of another SSR like eg Georgia.

Petroleum production at Greater Baku on the Caspian,Second Baku / Kuybyshev and Emba, northeast of Caspian ,doesn't have records for us Westerners to work with. Plus, how does one price a ton of petroleum for an export sale ? for a domestic sale to a state industry (like Western corporate transfer pricing) ? Of course there was pricing for these categories of sales but we must convert this info into the formats we use or else it's just useless data.

We can compute labor costs by comparative standards. The rest is difficult to impossible for the early years.

~ Bob
eastern Virginia, USA

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Re: Post WWI Soviet economy by republic

Post by hselassi » 09 Sep 2018 19:25

Sorry for the necropost, but since there were no bites, I decided to put my meager (although I believe to be somewhat thorough considering the lack of information out there) research into a spreadsheet and post it here to see if there was any interest in extrapolating it into a Brest-Litovsk USSR (Russian SSR, most of Belarus, and the central Asian republics).

Russ Econ 1912-1928.jpg

The loss of most industrial raw materials (although the loss of petroleum should not be as bad as shown on the spreadsheet since I am sure K-M is included in the Caucasus) would seriously weaken the Soviet recovery, certainly below numbers shown in the lower right. But its access to precious metals (and having no other raw materials would have recieved more interest) should allow it to buy at least food and some raw materials.

On Bob's post about debt, etc. I figure the successor states would just take the view of "Russia, what Russia, we don't see anyone called Russia around here" and after WWI with the economic issues going on everywhere, I don't think the loss of loans would be a primary issue, and, by the end of the time period discussed (1927), banks would probably let bygones be bygones, as they have done so ofter in history, in exchange for new cash inflows.
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