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131

(1923) [MARC] Author: Fridtjof Nansen - Tema: Russia
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INDUSTRY 131
1 92 1, being 57,200 tons instead of 41,000 tons.
The advance is still more noticeable in the
case of the Martin smelting furnaces, which
produced 107,000 tons of steel as against
70,400 tons.
These few figures only give a very incomplete
idea of the condition of Russian industry. They
are, however, sufficient to show that the increase
of production is rendered exceedingly difficult by
the lack of capital, and on the other hand that
the new economic policy has rendered possible a
notable improvement.
Nevertheless, one cannot close one’s eyes to the
fact that all the restrictions and monopolies con
stitute a serious danger, threatening the very
existence of Russian industry. Nor should it be
forgotten that its development last year was
attained largely at the expense of the working
capital.
Fresh capital is a crying need in order to replace
or repair the worn-out machinery, in order to buy
in time the necessary raw materials; and to be
able to give credit to Russia’s buyers, impoverished
by the war and the revolution, Russia’s industry
needs foreign help. I am aware that those who
have invested money in Russia earlier do not feel
great confidence in the present administration, and
I also know that several foreign Governments
claim payment of the money owed them by the
Tsar’s Government.
It is not for me to discuss these claims or to
offer advice to the Russian Government. I will

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