United States Economic Policy and International Relations

By Raymond F. Mikesell | Go to book overview

CHAPTER 16
The Realization of United States Objectives for Western Europe

THE DETERMINATION of economic goals and of the conditions for realizing them through the provision of financial assistance and other measures is far from being an exact science. In spite of the elaborate estimates of requirements and projections of performance which have been carried on by the Organization for European Economic Cooperation and the Economic Cooperation Administration, results have frequently been wide of expectations. It will not be the author's purpose to provide a comprehensive analysis of these goals and projections nor to develop detailed projections of his own for the future under present circumstances of rapidly moving events. Some discussion of the determination of the economic goals of the OEEC and of the ECA will, however, reveal important policy decisions.


The OEEC Interim Report

In the summer of 1948, the OEEC asked each of the participating countries to submit a plan of action by means of which it intended to maintain its economy in 1952-1953 without extraordinary assistance, assuming a continuation of ECA until the middle of 1952. The individual country submissions were analyzed by the OEEC, and the results, together with the individual country submissions, were published in December, 1948.1 The Interim Report set forth the commodity production and the trade and balance-of-payments goals for the participating countries for 1948-1949, 1949-1950, and 1952-1953. The long-term production programs called for an increase in industrial production by 1952-1953 to approximately 30 per cent above the prewar level or at an annual rate of increase of about 6 per cent for the 4-year period.2 In the case of agricultural production, which was still well below prewar levels at the beginning of the Recovery Program, the participating country programs

____________________
1
Interim Report on the European Recovery Programme, Organization for European Economic Cooperation, Paris, Vols. I and II, Dec. 30, 1948.
2
Ibid., Vol. I, pp. 24-25.

-274-

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