Where did the resources of occupied Europe go?

Discussions on the economic history of the nations taking part in WW2, from the recovery after the depression until the economy at war.
Pods
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Re: Where did the resources of occupied Europe go?

Post by Pods » 04 Aug 2020 01:09

TheMarcksPlan wrote:
22 Jul 2020 07:41
This thread is beholden to one of the great myths of WW2: that occupied Europe contributed little to the Nazi war effort. The OP is apparently (?) under the impression that French contributions to the German war effort would have been reflected in German GDP numbers... Not true.

Some of the scholarship that corrects this myth is discussed in another Economy thread: viewtopic.php?f=66&t=245879#p2239034
Technically, the main contributions of occupied Europe, such as slave labor and net imports, should be included in German GDP. However, we note that German GDP growth during was lower than its three main opponents.

The historical consensus states that occupied Europe contributed 25% of the German war effort, but looking at the data that figure even seems high.

Another thing to consider is the amount of manpower that Germany used to occupy and defend those territories. Approximately 30% of its divisions.

Considering that Germany was defeated by a much less efficient rival but with massive superiority in human resources, the inputs it acquired from occupied Europe seem clearly insignificant and of little relevance and do not compensate for the manpower spent on maintaining them.

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TheMarcksPlan
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Re: Where did the resources of occupied Europe go?

Post by TheMarcksPlan » 04 Aug 2020 02:10

Pods wrote:Technically, the main contributions of occupied Europe, such as [...] net imports, should be included in German GDP
No. That GDP excludes net imports is Econ 101. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gross_dom ... xpenditure
The historical consensus states that occupied Europe contributed 25% of the German war effort, but looking at the data that figure even seems high.
Which data and why?
Another thing to consider is the amount of manpower that Germany used to occupy and defend those territories. Approximately 30% of its divisions.
First, this is directly addressed and quantified in Does Conquest Pay?, one of the books discussed in the linked thread. The author concludes that occupation costs were a small fraction of resources extracted.

Second, the "30% of divisions" deployed west were not primarily for occupation purposes but for defense against Allied landings.
Germany was defeated by a much less efficient rival
Do you mean the SU? If so, Arguably true but if you mean the Wallies definitely false. Western output per man-hour was significantly greater than German.
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historygeek2021
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Re: Where did the resources of occupied Europe go?

Post by historygeek2021 » 02 Mar 2021 01:41

Seems like the inefficiency was Hitler's creation. He wanted his underlings to compete for his favor rather than establish a streamlined bureaucracy that could manage economic and military affairs professionally.

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Re: Where did the resources of occupied Europe go?

Post by Peter89 » 08 Mar 2021 17:17

historygeek2021 wrote:
02 Mar 2021 01:41
Seems like the inefficiency was Hitler's creation. He wanted his underlings to compete for his favor rather than establish a streamlined bureaucracy that could manage economic and military affairs professionally.
Not "Hitler's creation", but of a series of problems. Most important ones:

- Germany had little chance to compete in the world's economy; most of the markets were protected
- the inconvertability of the Reich's mark meant that Germany couldn't increase - or even maintain! - its rearmament effort, and also had to rely on autarchic measures to save hard / foreign currency,further decreasing its effectiveness
- Nazis delivered a serious blow to themselves with the expulsion of Jews and other intellectuals
- Germany's geopolitical position was such that it could not afford to lose the Atlantic, the Mediterranean and the Soviet trade
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