The relocation of soviet factories 1941

Discussions on the economic history of the nations taking part in WW2, from the recovery after the depression until the economy at war.
daveh
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The relocation of soviet factories 1941

Postby daveh » 17 May 2003 12:52

In many general books on the start of the German Soviet war mention is made of the great efforts the Soviets took in removing entire factories and their work force away from the advancing Germans. Such factories formed the core of the Soviet productive effort in WW2.

Does anyone know if such a move was planned for before the German invasion?
Who and what organisation was in charge?
Has anyone any actual details of numbers and types of factories moved?
How quickly in general were such factories restarted? I know of some specific examples but was wondering about the overall level of efficiency in re starting production.

Thanks in advance

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Steve
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Postby Steve » 19 May 2003 12:05

On June 23rd 41 mobilisation production plans went into force. On June 24th the Evacuation Council was set up and on the 30th the State Defense Committee was organised with Stalin as its head. In July 41 300,000 railway wagons were in operation in August 185,000 in September 140,000 in October 175,000 in November 123,000. In the July November period 1,503 industrial enterprises were evacuated to the east. It took two and a half years to erect a blast furnace before the war but furnaces No. 5 and 8 were erected in eight monthes at Magnitogorsk. In October tank building plant No.183 was working in November it was evacuated and in December it resumed production. Tank production went from 4,177 in the second half of 41 to 11,021 in the first half of 42.
Military production increased 180% in the urals in 1942 compared to 41 200% in the Volga area and 140% in Western Siberia.
In 1942 4.4 million industrial workers were trained or re-educated. The number of women operating for example forging and press machines rose from 11% 1941 to 50% end of 42.
The Germans siezed or put out of action 31,850 big and small industrial enterprises. German industrial capacity in 41 including conquered countries was :-
31.8 million tons of steel against the Soviets 18.3
rolled stock 22.5 m.tons against Soviets 13.1
coal 506mt against Soviets 165.9mt
stock of metal cutting machines 1694 thousand Soviet 58.4 thousand

From an article by Colonell G.S. Kravchenko 1967

"There had been only scant pre-war contingency planning, there were no actual plans for any strategic industrial withdrawl into the eastern hinterlands, where the building of new plants and the construction of new railways had proceeded very slowly"........."the highly centralised state machine was scattered behind the Volga"......."the very lowest echolons of the Party and administrative machine proved to be inflexable to the point of inertia".

From John Erickson The Road To Stalingrad.

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daveh
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Postby daveh » 19 May 2003 17:55

Many thanks Steve just the sort of information I was after.

I think the figures you quote speak for themselves, someone somewhere had done at least in some cases an amzingly complicated job fast and efficiently.

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Steve
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Postby Steve » 19 May 2003 19:34

Dug up some interesting facts to complement the previous post. The first T34 from Zavod no. 183 (largest pre-war tank factory) was completed at Nizhni Tagil in the Urals on Dec. 8th 42 with the workers apparently living in tents, but pre war production at 183 was not reached till March 42 and it started its move on the 15th of September to the Urals (Soviet claims should always be taken with a pinch of salt). It would seem that plant workers after 1941 typicaly comprised 50% women 15% underage boys and 15% invalids and old men. Equipment was redesigned, the T34s model 1941 gun had 861 parts and its model 1942 gun 614. The cost per T34 in manpower and metal was reduced from 269,000 roubles in 41 to 135,000 by 43. Total T34 production for 1942 was 12,553 and for 40/41 about 3,100.

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Postby Darrin » 27 May 2003 13:03

The rus econmy from 1940 and 41 lost a third its size by 42. And from this size it grew slowly back but never approached its prewar size. It was just conc into producing very specific military items such as tanks because they needed to relace thier huge losses. Where as trucks after 4 years of slow growth approched half the prewar production. A similar if lesser effect is seen with certain other important industries such as oil and stell. It seems that miricles if they were preformed at all as the rus state were done in only very few isolated industry at the expense of others.

It also seems unlikly the rus planned to lose a third thier idustrial heartland before the war even began. IT seems more likly the slowness of the gers ability to cover vast stetches of terr gave the rus time to pick, plan and pull back a limited number of key industries. I mean even though the first ger off covered vast terr it took 6 months to take it givng the rus notice and time to prepare.

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Graham Clayton
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Re: The relocation of soviet factories 1941

Postby Graham Clayton » 18 Apr 2013 02:07

A quote from "The Soviet economy and the Red Army, 1930-1945" by Walter S Dunn:

On June 24, 1941, the Council for Evacuation was appointed. On July 4, 1941, the Council ordered Voznesenskii, director of five-year planning, to organise the movement of industry and workers to the east. Local committees used the five-year plan structure with 3,000 agents controlling the movement. Evacuation of industrial plants began in August 1941 and continued until the end of the year. But evidence shows evacuation began much earlier, or at least the transfer of machine tools and skilled workers to "shadow factories" in the east. The US military attache reported significant transfers of machines and men from the Moscow area to the east in late 1940 and early 1941. The rapid growth in production in early 1942 suggested that the evacuation had started in 1940. The tempo increased in August 1941.

Evacuation began with a recommendation from a local agency to the commissariat of the appropriate industry. After investigation, the recommendation was approved by the Evacuation Council and placed on a schedule giving the date, method of transport, and relocation site. In addition, unapproved evacuations took place on the initiative of local authorities.

Evacuation was well under way in the first week of August 1941. Sacrificing immediate production, many factories closed in August, packed up, and moved to the Ural Mountains. But because their products were needed, some plants remained in production until too late to be moved. Only 17 of the 64 iron and steel plants in the Donbas were evacuated between October and December 1941. The Kharkov tank factory was being dismantled when the Germans arrived.

The railroad made evacuation possible. As the railroads moved 2.5 million men to the front in June, July and August, they moved industrial machinery on their return. For example, on 7 August 1941, 3,000 rail cars per day evacuated iron and steel manufacturing equipment from the Dnieper area - 1,000 cars per day for the electrical industry, 400 cars per day for the chemical industry, and others. From August 8 to August 15, 1941, 26,000 rail cars evacuated industries in the Ukraine. In Moscow, 80,000 cars transported 498 factories, including 75,000 lathes, leaving only 21,000. Production by many factories resumed by December.......The operation was not always orderly. Other indications that planning was not complete and that turnaround time was longer than average were anecdotes of equipment having been dumped beside the tracks to empty the cars for a return journey. Of the 700 plants evacuated in the first months, only 270 arrived at planned destinations fully equipped, and 110 arrived with only part of their equipment....At times, inadequate planning resulted in trains having been loaded with materials and despatched with no destination to prevent capture by the Germans. These orphan trains moved around the country for long periods because there were no plans to use the equipment and no one knew what to do with them.....The evacuation of the factories was an immense undertaking. In the last three months of 1941, GOSPLAN moved 1,360 factories: 455 to the Urals, 210 to Western Siberia, and 250 to Central Asia and Kazahkstan. By the end of 1941, 1,523 large factories were moved. A few went to the Far East. The total was only a small proportion of the 32,000 factories captured by the Germans, but arms-related factories, representing 12% of the industrial potential in the occupied zone, were evacuated.
"Air superiority is a condition for all operations, at sea, in land, and in the air." - Air Marshal Arthur Tedder.

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Re: The relocation of soviet factories 1941

Postby dfnsatty » 16 Feb 2014 03:06

Now I will be up all night looking for a website I saw about 2009. It was not internet garbage, but a scholarly paper on the factory relocation. The author stated that as early as 1930 Stalin antcipated an invasion from western Europe, and began building an infrastructure in the Urals. There were factory shell buildings, more railway capacity, and an electricty grid far in excess of the immediate needs of the area. But there was no housing built for the workers! I'm looking for it.

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Der Alte Fritz
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Re: The relocation of soviet factories 1941

Postby Der Alte Fritz » 17 Feb 2014 14:40

It might be this http://www.zdt-magazine.ru/publik/history/2008/june-08.htm or you can have a look at this http://su-industria.livejournal.com/68345.html?nojs=1.

There was no 1930s plan to relocate industry behind the Urals in the event of war. The Soviet view of warfare was that the best defence was to carry the attack to the enemy by an immediate counter attack into enemy territory.

The building of infrastructure in the Urals was as a result of basic Soviet philosophy as expounded by Lenin. Right from 1918, the view was taken that the economic development of the USSR had been too concentrated in the 'old' centres of Moscow, Leningrad and Kiev/Donbass and that outer regions had been starved of investment because of this. Due to this the Soviet Union should aim for a more even spread of industry, agriculture and resource management and the main person associated with this was the chief non-Russian - J.S. Stalin. While the NEP started this process, the change was PLANNED for the 1st FYP although not achieved in full. The result was that the Urals was started as a separate development area while the 'old centres' received less than normal capital development. Other areas such as Siberia, Transcaucasia, Maritime Provinces and particularly the Volga basin were developed as industrial centres. There was a trend towards gigantomania in building super large factories but these were spread more evenly across the USSR than before. This trend was reversed in the 3 FYP with a policy of regionalism where smaller factories were built and drew their resources from local or regional areas in an attempt to reduce the transport burden on the railways.

None of this was to do with invasion planning but rather was a basic tenet of Marxist-Leninist thought.


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