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66

(1923) [MARC] Author: Fridtjof Nansen - Tema: Russia
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RUSSIA AND PEACE
66
of production in turn is also seriously delayed by
the insufficiency of transport.
I note with pleasure the fact that the percentage
of locomotives under repair declined between July
and December, 1922, from 65 per cent. to 56 per
cent. But seeing that the Commissariat for Foreign
Trade has recently purchased in Germany and
Sweden 1,200 locomotives, of which nearly 1,000
were delivered in December, 1922, the per
centage of engines in disrepair can easily have
been reduced without the repair shops having made
corresponding progress.
On the whole one must not forget that when
the state of the Russian railways has improved,
it is not an unimportant consideration that the
Russian Government bought locomotives, rails and
tenders, etc, at a cost of 24 million pounds sterling,
through the railway mission headed by Professor
Lomonosov, which they sent abroad. I do not
think that the actual condition of the Russian
finances will allow a repetition of this measure,
of which I would be the first to admit the wisdom.
According to Bogdanov’s report, 45 per cent.
to 50 per cent. of the railway line sleepers have
grown so old that they ought to be changed.
According to the plan which has just been
adopted, 22 million sleepers ought to be removed
annually in order to avert the crisis.
The Soviet Press declared as far back as
November, 1921, that 43 million sleepers ought
to be changed, 19 million of these immediately.
However, it was not possible to change more than

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