From For a Lasting Peace, for a People’s Democracy!
No. 7 (67), February 17, 1950

Penetration of American Capital in Yugoslav Economy

E. Gero, Member, Politburo, Hungarian Workers’ Party

The meeting of the Information Bureau of Communist and Workers’ Parties in Hungary in November 1949 established that “……the Yugoslav Government is completely dependent on foreign imperialist circles and has become an instrument of their aggressive policy…” and that “the Tito – Rankovic clique has created wide possibilities for the penetration of foreign capital into the economy of the country, and has placed the economy under the control of capitalist monopolies”.

Events since the Meeting of Information Bureau not only fully confirm the correctness of these statements, but prove that penetration of foreign capital into Yugoslav economy is being intensified. Among the various monopoly groups, first place belongs to American imperialism, to the American monopoly groups which, more and more, are extending their control over the economic life of Yugoslavia. Simultaneously with economic penetration and as an organic part of this penetration, American imperialism is creating in Yugoslavia strategic positions for an aggressive war against the Soviet Union and countries of People’s Democracy.

Even before the Second World War, the foreign capital held altogether strong positions in the economy of Yugoslavia. In 1939, foreign investments in Yugoslavia amounted to 7,375,000,000 dinars and were more than 50 per cent of the total capital investments. Although only a minor part of this investment consisted of actual capital brought into the country, the imperialists having acquired the major part by exploiting the working people of Yugoslavia, the Tito clique recognised all this investment as foreign property. The Tito gang displayed particular regard for American imperialists, to whom it has already disbursed approximately 20 million dollars in compensation. In addition, the Tito clique recognised the validity of all the old State debts of Yugoslavia, —including the debt to the United States, to the total of 2,000 million dinars (38.5 million dollars).

The Tito gang is doing all in its power to conceal from the working people of Yugoslavia and from world democratic public opinion that it has sold the country to the imperialists. The Yugoslav Press, as a rule, does not even mention the activities of the representative of various imperialist-monopoly groups in Yugoslavia. More than that, the Yugoslav Press even conceals the fact that there are representatives and bosses of capitalist trusts in Yugoslavia. The foreign bourgeois Press, however, often blurts out these facts. For instance, “Tribune des Nations” wrote on January 13th that a representative of “Bethlehem Steel”, the American trust, had arrived in Yugoslavia, but strange to say no-one mentioned this visit and the newspapers did not even mention his name.

Actually, Yugoslavia swarms with representative of capitalist trusts and banks, and above all, with American “specialists”. Their task is to find the objectives which chiefly interest American capital and to secure the “guarantees” which the Titoites provide for foreign capitalist groups and imperialist State, underwritings the loans they obtain from the imperialists.

In a speech made recently in Yugoslav Parliament, Tito lied when he said the imperialists are granting loans to his fascist clique without selfish aims or political conditions. It is common knowledge that American imperialists, even in their dealings with such imperialist countries as Britain and France, grant loans only on condition of complete control over their economics and armed forces, and as far the People’s Democracies, they are denied all loans by the American imperialists. It is equally known that any American bank can grant loan to a foreign State only with the consent of the U.S. Government, and that the American Government stipulates as a condition for such a loan that the economic and financial situation in the country be studied on the spot by an American Government Commission. It is therefore obvious that when the American magnates grant loan to the Tito clique, this is done at a price. The price is that of Yugoslavia’s independence and of complete control over her economy by American imperialists.

That the Tito clique in return for U.S. loans has bartered the independence of Yugoslavia is evident from other facts replete with concrete data – if one makes a careful study of the press in the capitalist countries. The Swiss Press, for instance, released a very interesting item about a twenty million dollar loan which, on Truman’s instructions, was granted to the Titoites via the American Export-Import Bank. According to one of the Swiss papers, the conditions stipulated by the Export-Import Bank are “becoming more and more clear”. It went on to say that one of the conditions was big concessions in Slovenia, including the transfer of the Kaminka Mines in the area of the zinc and lead ore deposits, in the form of a concession to the American trust, Anaconda Copper Mining Co. The second condition stipulates that the U.S. Government will have the right to send, through various monopolist groups, “expert advisers” to the most important Yugoslav enterprises and that the Yugoslav Government shall ensure all the conditions to enable them fully to acquaint themselves with these enterprises. In other words, the Tito clique agreed to place Yugoslav industry under the American control. The dispatch of “expert advisers” is in full swing. Thus, late in 1949, the American trust, “Mackenzie Engineering Company”, sent a big group of “expert advisers” to Yugoslavia.

This, however, does not by a long way exhaust the long list of conditions by which Yugoslavia ensures special rights to the Americans including access to Yugoslav airfields for “Pan-American Airways”. This agreement was signed on December 24th, 1949.

The Tito clique has also pledges itself to import American “culture” into Yugoslavia. Under this agreement cinemas are showing only American films, a fact easily corroborated by a glance at the adverts in the Belgrade papers. It is also worth mentioning that after World War II, Blum – the “leader” of the “French Socialists” who has aged in treachery – concluded a similar agreement with American imperialists, one which not only subordinates the French cinema industry to the Americans but simultaneously serves the purpose of spreading imperialist poison among the working people of France. However, the pact concluded by the Tito clique to spread American “culture” is not confined to cinema alone. The Tito – Djilas fascist press in Yugoslavia is, of late, devoting more and more space to information about “cultural life” in the United States. This shows that the Titoites are zealously carrying out their obligations to their masters.

The Tito gang want to make the people of Yugoslavia believe that now that the bauxite mines, the aluminium industry, the molybdenum and the copper mines have been turned over to the American imperialists, now that they control the economy and finances of the country, millions of American dollars will flow into Yugoslavia. But this is of course is out of the question. American monopolists did not lay their hands on Yugoslav economy for the purpose of giving; they did so in order to plunder. They give just enough to maintain their agents – the Tito gang – in power, to squeeze out of the people of Yugoslavia colonial super-profits, and to create strategic positions in Yugoslavia. Displaying caution, they are not granting Tito and his clique loans in bulk but in meager pittances, for they have learned from the bitter lesson in China. The Americans treat Tito as they do Franco – the hangman of the Spanish people. They give him no more than they believe necessary to secure for themselves the raw material resources of the country, and, in the first place, strategic raw materials, to secure colonial super-profits and to maintain Franco’s fascist rule over the people of Spain.

In accordance with this “principle” and practice, American imperialists (like all other imperialists) regard Yugoslavia as a raw material appendage of their economy. They have no intention whatsoever of developing Yugoslavia’s heavy industry. At the very most they will permit the Titoites to create a minimum base for a war industry, which they calculate, might become necessary in the event of an imperialist war of plunder against the free and independent nations. But “manufactured goods” (for example, armaments) will be supplied by the U.S. This is evident from Truman’s decision, reported in the American Press on January 12th. Outlining the viewpoint of the National Security Council, Truman declared that the United States would, under certain conditions, supply military requirement to Yugoslavia. Simultaneously, American imperialists and partly British and French are importing huge quantities of various strategic raw materials from Yugoslavia. As is known, Yugoslav copper is shipped chiefly to America. A similar situation prevails in respect to other non-ferrous metals.

Yugoslavia is one of the largest hemp producers in Europe, but the hemp is not grown for the people of Yugoslavia: in 1949 eighty per cent of it was sold at an exceedingly low price to the U.S. and Britain.

In addition to raw materials, Yugoslavia ships large quantities of foodstuffs to the U.S. or, on its instructions, to other capitalist countries. They ship most essential foodstuffs, vital to the people: wheat, maize and other foods urgently needed by Yugoslavia, but which are also needed by the imperialists. Thus, to please its imperialist masters, the Tito gang dooms the working people of Yugoslavia to hunger and misery.

As pointed out in the Resolution of the Information Bureau of Communist and Workers’ Parties, it is becoming more and more evident that “the ever – increasing slavish dependence of Yugoslavia on imperialism leads to intensified exploitation of the working class and to a severe worsening of its conditions”.

Despite the bloody fascist terror employed by the Tito-Rankovic gang against the working class and all the people of Yugoslavia, Yugoslav working people will never agree that their country, liberated by the glorious Soviet Army and for whose independence they themselves shed so much blood, should remain an imperialist colony. Under the leadership of the underground, genuine Communist Party they have joined the struggle against the treacherous fascist Tito gang and its imperialist masters in order that Yugoslav shall return to the camp of peace, democracy and Socialism.

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