Soviet-German Trade Agreement of 1939
SOVIET-GERMAN TRADE AGREEMENT OF 1939
After declining relations throughout the 1930s and then a flurry of negotiations in the summer of 1939, Germany (represented by Karl Schnurre) and the Soviet Union (represented by Yevgeny Babarin) signed a major economic agreement in Berlin in the early morning hours of August 20. The treaty called for 200 million Reichsmark in new orders and 240 million Reichsmark in new and current exports from both sides over the next two years.
This agreement served two purposes. First, it brought two complementary economies closer together. To support its war economy, Germany needed raw materials—oil, manganese, grains, and wood. The Soviet Union needed manufactured products—machines, tools, optical equipment, and weapons. Although the USSR had slightly more room to maneuver and a somewhat superior bargaining position, neither country had many options for receiving such materials elsewhere. Subsequent economic agreements in 1940 and 1941, therefore, focused on the same types of items.
Second, the economic negotiations provided a venue for these otherwise hostile powers to discuss political and military issues. Hitler and Stalin signaled each other throughout 1939 by means of these economic talks. Not surprisingly, therefore, the Nazi-Soviet Pact was signed a mere four days after the economic agreement.
Because raw materials took less time to produce, Soviet shipments initially outpaced German exports and provided an important prop to the German war economy in late 1940 and 1941. Before the Germans could fully live up to their end of the bargain, Hitler invaded.
See also: foreign trade; germany, relations with; nazi-soviet pact of 1939; world war ii
Ericson, Edward E. (1999). Feeding the German Eagle: Soviet Economic Aid to Nazi Germany, 1933–1941. West-port, CT: Praeger.
Edward E. Ericson III
"Soviet-German Trade Agreement of 1939." Encyclopedia of Russian History. . Encyclopedia.com. (September 22, 2018). http://www.encyclopedia.com/history/encyclopedias-almanacs-transcripts-and-maps/soviet-german-trade-agreement-1939
"Soviet-German Trade Agreement of 1939." Encyclopedia of Russian History. . Retrieved September 22, 2018 from Encyclopedia.com: http://www.encyclopedia.com/history/encyclopedias-almanacs-transcripts-and-maps/soviet-german-trade-agreement-1939
Encyclopedia.com gives you the ability to cite reference entries and articles according to common styles from the Modern Language Association (MLA), The Chicago Manual of Style, and the American Psychological Association (APA).
Within the “Cite this article” tool, pick a style to see how all available information looks when formatted according to that style. Then, copy and paste the text into your bibliography or works cited list.
Because each style has its own formatting nuances that evolve over time and not all information is available for every reference entry or article, Encyclopedia.com cannot guarantee each citation it generates. Therefore, it’s best to use Encyclopedia.com citations as a starting point before checking the style against your school or publication’s requirements and the most-recent information available at these sites:
Modern Language Association
The Chicago Manual of Style
American Psychological Association
- Most online reference entries and articles do not have page numbers. Therefore, that information is unavailable for most Encyclopedia.com content. However, the date of retrieval is often important. Refer to each style’s convention regarding the best way to format page numbers and retrieval dates.
- In addition to the MLA, Chicago, and APA styles, your school, university, publication, or institution may have its own requirements for citations. Therefore, be sure to refer to those guidelines when editing your bibliography or works cited list.