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Jahrbuch für Wirtschaftsgeschichte / Economic History Yearbook

Ed. by Ziegler, Dieter

CiteScore 2018: 0.06

SCImago Journal Rank (SJR) 2018: 0.115
Source Normalized Impact per Paper (SNIP) 2018: 0.203

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Volume 49, Issue 2


Spezialisierungsinteresse und Integrationsaversion im Rat für Gegenseitige Wirtschaftshilfe: Der DDR-Werkzeugmaschinenbau in den 1970er Jahren

Ralf Ahrens
Published Online: 2016-08-13 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.1524/jbwg.2008.49.2.73


Socialist economic integration’ in the Council for Mutual Economic Assistance (CMEA)officially aimed at progressing from the member states’ bilateral trade to the bi- and multilateral coordination of production, research and development. The East German economy had, on the one hand, a vital interest in this international division of labour through political planning that stabilized markets for imports and exports and created economies of scale. On the other hand, politically planned specialization with the lower industrialized CMEA countries tended to preserve the existing structure of GDR industry instead of stimulating technological progress. The article illustrates this dilemma with a case study of the machine tool industry. In the 1970s, this highly qualified and traditionally trade-intensive branch fell behind the international trend that went from numerical control (NC) to computerized numerical control (CNC) technology. But the problem of declining international competitiveness was already detected in the 1960s and early 1970s regarding traditional NC machine tools. Evidence shows that even these less complex tasks could not be managed sufficiently by CMEA or bilateral integration measures.

Keywords: Council for Mutual Economic Assistance; GDR; machine tool industry

About the article

Published Online: 2016-08-13

Published in Print: 2008-12-01

Citation Information: Jahrbuch für Wirtschaftsgeschichte / Economic History Yearbook, Volume 49, Issue 2, Pages 73–92, ISSN (Online) 2196-6842, ISSN (Print) 0075-2800, DOI: https://doi.org/10.1524/jbwg.2008.49.2.73.

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