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The Financial Relationships Between Turkey and Soviet Union in Early Republican Period: The Example of The Journal of "İktı̇sad Bültenı̇" 1924-1925

Authors:
  • Nigde Omer Halisdemir University

Abstract and Figures

Although Ottoman Empire overcame several political and economic crises during her lifespan of six centuries, the industrialization of West and the initiation of the distribution of new economic systems under its control; the occurring crises began to be intensified with extensive changes. Except foreign conjectural movements, crisis and chaos became a chronic disease for Ottoman Empire with the beginning of the deadlock in the existing systems and organizations in the country. Ottoman Empire, which sought a way out from crisis and assisted it with reform movements, became an economic market for the foreign countries despite her all efforts and exertions. The Turkish-Soviet relations which had been changed after World War I, will be explained through foreign trade in the first chapter of this study. In the next part, the relationship between Turkey and Soviet Russia in early republican period; will be expressed in the context of the economic journal of “Iktisad Bulteni” (Economics Bulletin) which was published regularly in those years. The unique side of this study is that the customs and foreign trade relationships between Russia will be elucidated in consideration of “iktisad bulteni” which was dated 1926 and was not in the literature.
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ECONOMIC
&
BUSINESS ISSUES IN
RETROSPECT
&
PROSPECT
ECONOMIC AND BUSINESS
ISSUES IN RETROSPECT
AND PROSPECT
Edited By
Mareel Meciar
Kerem Gökten
Ahmet Arif Eren
Econornic and Business Issues in Retrospect and Prospect
(Edited
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Mareel Meciar, Kerem Gökten, Ahmet ArifEren)
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22
THE FINANCIAL RELATIONSHIPS BETWEEN TURKEY
AND SOVIET UNION IN EARLY REPUBLICAN PERIOD:
THE EXAMPLE OF THE JOURNAL OF "İKTİsAD
BÜLTENİ" 1924-1925
Ali Gökhan GÖLÇEJ<1, Işıl Şirin SELÇUK (PhdJ, Altuğ Murat KÖKTAŞ3"
ı.
Introduction
Although Ottoman Empire overcame several political and economic erises during her lifespan of six centuries,
the industrialization ofWest and the initiation of the distribution of new economic systems under its control; the
occurring erises began to be intensifıed with extensive changes. Except foreign conjectural movements, erisis and
chaos became a chronic disease for Ottoman Empire with the beginning of the deadlock in the existing systems
and organizations in the country. Ottoman Empire, which sought a way out from erisis and assisted it with reform
movements, became an economic market for the foreign countries despite her all effotts and exertions.
19th century was a period with collapses and erises for Ottoman Empire. Within such a case, several reforms had
been made in order to create a way out from these collapses and crises. Initially, the problem with
ayans
(landed
proprietors) tried to be solved with
Sened-i Ittifak
(Deed of Agreement), and then, the Edict of
Tanzimat
was
dedared in order to fınd an intensive solution for the crisis. Therefore, it would not be wrong to daim that 19th
century was both erises and reforms age for the Ottoman Empire. On the other hand, the political and comrnercial
relationship with foreign countries began to be got better and the Ottomans modernized its administrative structure
with the approval of
Kanun-i Esasi
(fırst Ottoman constitution), and the restoration of constitutional monarchy in
1908. However, these aforementioned reforms did not succeed under the influence of chronic firıancial and political
erises in the Ottoman Empire. Eventually, Ottoman Empire brought her end by herself, and the consecutive wars
caused her to cease to exist.
While the subject of this study is Soviet Russia, its predecessor Russian Empire faced with Ottoman Empire several
times in history. However, the Russo-Ottoman War of 1768 caused to change the balances of these two states in
favor of Russia (Saray, 1998: 77). Then, the relationships between Russian Empire and Ottoman Empire from
this date were in mostly state of war since World War
i
(Uzunçarşılı, 1988: 490).
On the other hand, the world view which had been changed with geographical discoveries, industrialization,
technical developments and enlightenment, affected trade as well. Since the pott towns became comrnercial centers,
maritime trade increased signifıcantly within the economic market. Although Russia had a coast in Black Sea, since
Russia could not reach warm water ports, her activities in maritime trade was considerably low. The activities of
Portugal, Netherlands, France, and Britain in both the maritime trade and port towns especially drew attention.
Research Assistant, Ömer Halis Demir University, FEAS, Department ofPublic Finance, aligokhangolcek@ohu.edu.tr
2 Research Assistant, BAlBU, FEAS, Department of Economics
3 Associate Prof., Kırşehir Ahi Evran University, Department ofPublic Finance
245
THE FINANCIAL RELATIONSHIPS BETWEEN TURKEY AND SOVIET UNION IN EARLY REPUBLlCAN PERIOD:
THE EXAMPLE OF THE JOURNAL OF "iKTisAD BÜLTENi" 1924-1925
Ali Gökhan GÖLÇEK, !şıl Şirin SELÇUK (Phd), Altuğ Murat KÖKTAŞ
For example, while the numbers of Russian registered ships were 71 between the years of 1818-1839, this number
is only 4% of the total ships in the aforementioned period. However, the number of Russian registered ships in
Istanbul port was around 45% in 1908 (Küçükkalay, 2013: 80).
Ottoman Empire had commercial activities with several states
in
her fınal period due to she became an open
market. Import-export numbers mostly realized in favor of imports with the influence of provisionism mentality
which was based on the policy of providing domestic consumption unlike mercantilism.
When the foreign trade components with Russia have been examined, wine and olive oil (with %50) were in the
forefront among the exports between the years of 1840-42. On the other hand, Ottomans imported mostly wheat
and cereals from Russia. In the 1900s, while the export components shaped as fruit, peanut, and tobacco, the
import products were mostly cereal and petroleum products (Pamuk, 1995: 61-70). However, the foreign trade
volume of Ottomans and Russians were low in comparison with the other states (Pamuk, 1985: 662).
it
is safe
to say that this condition was areflection of political conjuncture. The foreign trade with Russia especially came
to a halt due to hustle in Balkans and Slav movements.
The Turkish-Soviet relations which had been changed afrer World War I, will be explained through foreign trade
in the fırst chapter of this study. In the next part, the relationship between Turkeyand Soviet Russia in early
republican period; will be expressed in the context of the economic journal of
"Iktisad Bulteni"
(Economics Bulletin)
which was published regularly in those years. The unique side of this study is that the customs and foreign trade
relationships between Russia will be elucidared in consideration of
"iktisad bulteni"
which was dated 1926 and
was not
in
the literature.
2. The Sizes ofTurkish-Russian Trade before the Republican Era
The terms of foreign trade between Ottoman Empire and Russia began to decrease with the Anglo-Ottoman
Treaty
in
1838. The numbers ofimports had espedally been changed in favor of England due to Anglo-Ottoman
Treaty in 1838 which provided free trade with England.
Table
ı.
Import in the Ottoman Empire, 1830-1912
(%)
Years Britain France Germany Austria Russia
1830-1832 19.0 9.9 3.1 16.9 31.3
1840-1842 29.3 8.6 4.6 22.1 16.5
1850-1852 25.5 9.3 9.7 26.2 13.6
1860-1862 26.5 12.2 9.5 17.2 11.5
1870-1872 32.4 12.3 13.6 12.9 9.2
1880-1882 45.2 11.8 2.4 11.8 9.7
1890-1892 35.9 12.4 10.3 9.8 9.9
1900-1902 29.8 10.0 9.8 14.5 10.3
1909-1911 23.9 8.4 13.7 13.9 8.7
Source: Pamuk, 1995:
p.
62.
246
ECONOMIC
AND BUSINESS ISSUES
IN RETROSPECT
AND
PROSPECT
Mareel Meciar, Kerem Gökten, Ahmet ArifEren
France, Austria and Russia provided the requirement of manufactured goods in Ottoman Empire until the fırst
quarter of 19th century. However, Britain almost became alone in the Ottoman market with Anglo-Ottoman
Treaty and the other states could not compete with Britain in this market due to the cheap exports of Britain.
Another reason of this condition was that the states followed a protective and dosed foreign policy. While Russia
rigorously forbade the imports of several products in this period, France and Germany decided to execute high tariffs
(Kurmuş, 1974: 38). Unlike these states, Ottoman Empire became a complete open market due to capitulations
which were given to several states.
Table 2.
Export in the Ottoman Empire, 1830-1912
(%)
Years Britain France Germany Austria Russia
1830-1832 13.3 14.3 2.1 30.9 12.6
1840-1842 19.8 16.8 1.9 29.1 10.4
1850-1852 20.1 15.8 1.1 28.0 8.3
1860-1862 23.5 29.9 0.5 16.8 10.2
1870-1872 27.2 25.3 0.4 14.3 14.7
1880-1882 23.5 28.0 0.5 6.1 13.6
1890-1892 25.9 24.5 4.3 5.9 4.2
1900-1902 25.9 19.2 7.2 7.8 3.9
1909-1911 17.9 14.1 11.4 8.0 3.9
Source: Pamuk, 1995:
p.
61.
When the export numbers of Ottoman Empire in the Table 2 have been examined, it is seen that the exports were
mostly made with Austria. While the %30 of the trade with Austria especially comprised of tobacco, the export
of leather products had an importance as welL. However, it is observed that the exports had certain changes due
to the influence of Anglo-Ottoman Treaty. The changes in favor of England and France were areflection that
Ottoman Empire became an open market and she applied lower tariffs as well.
When the products in trade with Russia which is the subject of this study as well has been examined (Table 3),
fruits and olive oil were in the forefront within the products which were exported to Russia by Ottoman Empire.
Afrer the second half of 19th century, Russia gained importance in the tobacco exports.
In
addition to this, wheat
was the most important product which exported from Russia.
As
the part of provisionism principal, it was not
so surprising that wheat and flour imports were predominately made in order to supply domestic consumption.
However, the flour imports can be considered as the reflection of technological inefficacy at the beginning of20th
century. On the other hand, the requirement of petroleum products was increased due to the beginning of the
usage of motor land vehides, and this condition especially can be seen in the numbers of imports in at the fırst
quarter of20th century. The %40 of total imports in 1900-1902 were realized as petroleum products with Russia.
247
THE FINANCIAL RELATIONSHIPS BETWEEN TURKEY AND SOVIET UNION IN EARLY REPUBLlCAN PERIOD:
THE EXAMPLE OF THE JOURNAL OF "iKTisAD BÜLTENi" 1924-1925
Ali Gökhan GÖLÇEK, !şıl Şirin SELÇUK (Phd), Altuğ Murat KÖKTAŞ
Table 3.
The Total Shares ofProducts in the Foreign Trade between Ottoman Empire and Russia, 1840-1912
(%)
Exports Imports
Years Fruit Olive
oıt
Wlne Tobacco Petroleum Wheat Flour Alcoholic
Products Beverages
1840-42 24.7 12.0 13.6 2.5
-
59.3
- -
1859-61 20.4 8.4 2.4 14.8
-
51.2 7.2
-
1882-84 17.3 11.7 3.2 18.8
-
17.0 16.7 12.9
1900-02 16.4 6.9
-
14.7 40.2 3.1 13.6 3.4
1910-12 12.4 2.1
-
1.7 17.0 4.1 13.2 9.1
Sourceı
Pamuk,
1995:
p.
64-67.
As
a result of changing conjectural structure and political situation, several reform movements especially occurred
in a sequential manner in the Ottoman Empire since the second half of 19th century. The governments which
came into the power especially in the years of the restoration of constitutional monarchy submitted several political
suggestions for abolishing the capitulations. Thus, Ottoman Empire stirred when the European states had entered
to World War I, and these conditions guided Ottomans to abolish capitulations ex parte.
In the 9th September 1914, the government of Said Halim Pasha dedared that
all
financial, judicial and administrative
privileges of foreigners who were living in the Ottoman soils, in other words, the capitulations would be abolished
and this condition would be valid starting from the date of 1th October 1914. Moreover, it was also dedared that
all the relationships with foreigners would be arranged according to the principal of international law (Toprak,
1982: 71). However, deepening erisis in Europe penetrated into Ottoman Empire as well, and "the period of
fall", in other words, the beginning of the end had begun for the Ottoman Empire. Therefore, this radical step
of economic independence lost its meaning.
In consideration of these information, economic, political and military competitions between European States from
the end of 19th century to the beginning of 20th century among the European states continued to be intensifıed,
and these conditions caused the states to form blocs. While Germany, Austria-Hungary and Italy formed the bloc
of "Central Powers", Britain, France and Russia formed the bloc of Allied Powers. The growing tensions between
two sides burned their bridges with an exeuse which was the assassination of Austrian heir presumptive by a Serbian
nationalist. The countries of the blocks dedared war against each other, and this would trigger to the beginning
of global destruction as welL.
The national mobilization was dedared in Ottoman Empire with the beginning of World War I in 1914, and food
problem appeared. Although Ottoman Empire was an agricultural state, the signifıcant part of flours was brought
from Romania and Russia. The prices of flour increased due to the dosure of Dardanelles Strait because of state of
war and the entrance of Russia into the war and flour problem occurred in the Ottoman Empire (Toprak, 1982:
268). In addition to this, when the enterprises in the industry sector have been examined, while the enterprises
248
ECONOMIC
AND BUSINESS ISSUES
IN RETROSPECT
AND
PROSPECT
Mareel Meciar, Kerem Gökten, Ahmet ArifEren
in the food industry comprised of %27 percent of total enterprises approximately, the enterprises in the textile
fıeld was the second in line (Ökçün, 1984: 26). This condition is also the proof that Ottoman Empire followed
an industrial poliey based on consumption.
Russian Empire, which was in the bloc of Allied Powers in World War
I,
and Ottoman Empire, which was
in the bloc of Central Powers, inevitably confronted and they again appeared in other fronts. Russia occupied
Van, Erzurum, Mus, Erzincan and Trabzon until 1916 (Kurat, 1991: 295). During these occupations, Marxists
movements became influential in Russia. The people who desired to destroy Russian Empire in order to bring more
democratic structure, eventualIy actualized Soviet Revolution. Soviet Revolution was essentially two-phased, and
the fırst phase was known as the period of provisional government. The provisional government was established in
March 1917 under the presideney of Prince Lvov who was a supporter of Liberalism but this government could
not become successful. Bolsheviks grabbed power in November 1917 under the leadership of Vladimir Lenin.
Afrer Bolsheviks came into power, their fırst goal was to provide domestic peace. With this approach, "the Treaty
of Brest-Litovsk" was signed between Russia and Central Powers in March 1918 (Sander, 1989).
The Russo-Turkish War was ended with the Armistice of Erzincan (Sürrneli, 2001: p. 28) in December 1917.
The withdrawal of Russia from World War I affected the flow of history deeply since the batdefronts increased
and the balances changed as well. Afrer the Treaty of Brest-Litovsk, Turkey-Russia relations began to be improved.
However, the war had continued for the Ottoman Empire at the other fronts, and she suffered heavy defeats.
World War I ended for the Ottoman Empire with the Armistice of Mudros in 30th October 1918, and Ottoman
Empire virtually ceased to exist afrer the Treaty of Sevres in 1920.
3. Rapprochement ofTurkey-Russia in
Early
Republican Period
The Soviet officials got in touch with Istanbul government until Erzurum and Sivas congresses, but they cut off
their connection with Istanbul government afrer the Armistice of Mudros.
In
addition to this, it was known that
the fırst unoffidal contact between Mustafa Kemal Pasha and Soviet offidals happened at Havza in June 1919
(Karabekir, 1969). Yet, fırst serious contacts were made afrer Sivas Congress when Halil Kut Pasha was sent to
Moscow by Mustafa Kemal Pasha (Sorgun, 1972). The purpose of these negotiations was the expectation to
the support of new government, and to provide the aid of arms, arnmunition and money as welL.Thus, these
negotiations conduded positively.
Soviet Russia sent a committee to Turkey in order to follow the Independence War of Turkey dosely, and Trotsky
was assigned as the war commissar.
In
his statement in 1933, Trotsky said that he had there were no difficulties
with Turkish authorities. During the Turkish struggle for national independence in 1920, Mustafa Kemal Pasha
had received arms from Soviet Russia which had been delivered through the ageney ofTrotsky as commissar of war
(van Heijenoort, 1978: p. 21-22).
it
is known that the aids of Soviet Russia were essentially towards the creation
of a new state which would embrace the regime of Soviet as well.
Together with the establishment of Grand National Assembly in Ankara, the letter which was sent to Soviet
Russia by Mustafa Kemal Pasha, was considered as the fırst official contact between Ankara government and
Soviet Russia. Ankara government requested 5 million golds, arnmunition and arms from Soviet Russia for the
national struggle with this aforementioned letter
(Yüceer,
1995: 89-90). This rapprochement was considered as
249
THE FINANCIAL RELATIONSHIPS BETWEEN TURKEY AND SOVIET UNION IN EARLY REPUBLlCAN PERIOD:
THE EXAMPLE OF THE JOURNAL OF "iKTisAD BÜLTENi" 1924-1925
Ali Gökhan GÖLÇEK, !şıl Şirin SELÇUK (Phd), Altuğ Murat KÖKTAŞ
a "win-win' situation by both sides which was the reason why it was conduded positively.
As
a result of this
rapprochement, fırst ammunition and arms aid was made in September 1920, and 3387 rifles, 3623 crates with
ammunition, and approximately 3000 bayonets were delivered to Turkish authorities (Müderrisoğlu, 1990: 543).
These aids continued with the Moscow Treaty in 16th March 1921. In addition to these activities, Soviet Russia
made some financial aids as well besides military aids. The firıancial aids realized with 2.316.412 Turkish Uras
in 1920, and then they became 5.761.000 TL in 1921 and 10.791.412 TL in 1922 (Doygun, 1999: 46). These
aids strengthened Ankara government, and they were used for providing the necessary fınance of national struggle.
After the national struggle and the dedaration of the republic, the relationships with Russia continued genialIy.
Since the capitulations were abolished with the Treaty of Lausanne, the commercial relationship between these
two countries improved just like the relationship between the other countries and Turkey.
4. The Process ofTurkey-Russia Trade: Foreign Trade from Soviet Perspective in 1924-25
As
it
is
known, Turkey was in the danger of occupation and campaigned Independence War as well in 1920s.
Moreover, the sectors of agriculture and industry negatively affected and her economic performance was collapsed.
Turkey built three trivets in her foreign policy in order to polish the traces of past in the historical process. At this
point, Britain-France, Germany-Italy, and Soviet Union were these three powers.
Since the period of Russian Empire, the relationship with Russia continued to increase and the new connections
which were established in the period of national struggle, provided to build the political and economic relations
of Soviet Union and Turkey in the future on solid basis eventualIy. The %90 of foreign trade in Soviet Union was
controlled by the state and there was only %2 share of private sector in Soviet Union. Thus, Soviet Union tried to
execute foreign trade as state-controlled by establishing public commissariats in the countries which she made trade.
Various fairs were organized in the early republican period in order to develop trade between these two countries.
The commercial relations tried to be fıt with activities such as Russian Expo at Ankara in 1922, Agriculture Expo
at Moscow in 1923, and Industry Expo at Istanbul in 1924.
As
a result of this policy, several periodicals published in Turkey by Turkish bureau of the People's Commissariat
of Foreign Trade. The aim of this policy was to share the sizes of trade between these two countries with public
(İktisad Bülteni, 2018: 8). The activities of the customs bureau of Caucasus, which is both one of the subjects of
this studyand one of the most commonly used customs bureau of Ottoman Empire, in the Republican Period
will be tried to be examined in consideration of the statistics of aforementioned journal.
For instance, while Turkey made 3 million lira imports from Soviet Union in 1923, she also made approximately
1,7 million lira exports as well (Karnalov
&
Svistunuva, 2010: 227). In the aforementioned year, the imports
from Russia comprised of %2 of total imports. According to the information in the
"Iktisad Bulteni"
which the
exarnination had been made for the years of 1925-26, "1 American Dollarwas equal to 1.75 Turkish Lira'. However,
as a result of conducted exarninations with the aid of Turkish Statistical Institute (TurkStat) and Central Bank of
Turkey, the exchange rates of dollar in early republican period were different than
Iktisad Bulteni
(see the Table 4).
250
ECONOMIC AND BUSINESS ISSUES IN RETROSPECT AND PROSPECT
Mareel Meciar, Kerem Gökten, Ahmet ArifEren
Table 4.
The Exchange Rate of Dollar in 1923-1927
Years 1 American Dollar
1923 1.66
1924 1.93
1925 1.87
1926 1.93
1927 1.95
Sourceı Calculated from TurkStat, 2012: 477 and Tezel, 2015:
p.
136.
In consideration of these information, the foreign trade volume between Turkeyand Soviet Union in 1924 was
8.987.710 Turkish Liras (İktisad Bülteni, 2018: 15). However, the trade in the customs bureau of Caucasus was
not induded in these numbers, only the commercial activities in Istanbul were induded. Like previously stated,
the foreign trade of Soviet Union was executed as state-controlled, and a controlled trade was applied. Therefore,
the commercial activities in the customs bureau of Caucasus which had been made through private sector and
without the control of the state, were not induded in
Iktisad Bulteni
in the scope of total trade volume. However,
according to the public records, the foreign trade volume with Russia was 8.387.780 Turkish Liras in 1924.
Table 5.
The Export between Turkey-Soviet Union and its Share in Total Exports
(%), 1923-1927
(TL)
Years Total Exports
(1)
TheExport with Soviet Union (2)
(2/1)
1923 84.311.400 1.726.400 %2
1924 159.099.550 2.009.130 %1,3
1925 192.049.000 4.882.570 %2,5
1926 186.123.410 5.234.160 %2,8
1927 157.460.550 6.191.250 %3,9
Source: Calculated from TurkStat, 2012: 477 and Tezel, 2015:
p.
136.
Although a newly founded state has the low levels of foreign trade volume, the reason for the relatively low levels
of the exports of Turkey with Soviet Union in 1923 and 1924 was that some of the products had already been
sold to Soviet Union in the fairs which had been held in abroad. The trade of products had especially been made
with Soviet Union in the fairs of Baku and Nizhny Novgorod (İkrisad Bülteni, 2018: 16). Hence, although
the trade activities in these fairs indicated in the total export components, they were not reflected in the export
components with Soviet Union.
As
it is seen in Table 5, the share of the exports with Soviet Union within the
total exports was at the level of %2-3.
According to the information in the
Iktisad Bulteni,
the products which were imported from Turkey by Soviet
Union in the period of 1924-25 have been demonstrated in the Table 6.
251
THE FINANCIAL RELATIONSHIPS BETWEEN TURKEY AND SOVIET UNION IN EARLY REPUBLlCAN PERIOD:
THE EXAMPLE OF THE JOURNAL OF "iKTisAD BÜLTENi" 1924-1925
Ali Gökhan GÖLÇEK, !şıl Şirin SELÇUK (Phd), Altuğ Murat KÖKTAŞ
Table 6.
The Goodsand Products in Export Activities between Turkey-Soviet Union,
1925
(TL)
Exported Goods and Products TheEquivalent oJTL
Leather 136.966
Sesame 107.558
Rose Oil 11.250
Valonia Oak 360.148
Olive Oil 24.204
Olive 45.656
Orange 246.414
Lemon 53.220
Fig 44.518
Raisins 2.916
Sourceı
İktisad Bülteni, 2018:
p.
18-19.
While food products and fruits were mostly exported from Turkey to Soviet Union, the share of exported goods
within the total exports was %2. In addition to this, the arnounts of imports with Soviet Union and the numbers
of total imports in the period of 1923-27 in Turkey have been given in Table 7.
Table 7.
TheImports between Turkey-Soviet Union and Its Share in Totallmports
(%), 1923-1927
(TL)
Years Totallmports
(1)
Imports with Soviet Union (2)
(2/1)
1923 144.207.520 3.027.840 %2
1924 193.891.660 6.378.650 %3,2
1925 241.142.110 6.101.810 %2,5
1926 234.323.230 8.526.740 %3,6
1927 210.116.400 6.850.350 %3,2
Source:
Calculated from TurkStat, 2012:
477
and Tezel, 2015: 136.
The size of total imports from Soviet Union by Turkey was 6.378.650 TL in 1924. The one part of this import had
been made through Charnber of Commerce in Istanbul, while the one part of it had been made through Caucasian
border (İktisad Bülteni, 2018: 22). However, when table 7 was examined, it can be seen that the arnounts of
imports were decreased in 1927. Moreover, some problems had been occurred due to various commercial reasons
between these two countries in 1926. For instance, the high tariffs were demanded for the products from Turkey
to Soviet Union. This condition negativelyaffected the relations of Turkey-Soviet Union. Thus, negotiations were
made between the minister of foreign affairs of these two countries, Tevfik Rustu and Georgy Chicherin, and
Trade and Marine Agreement was signed for the solution to this problem (Akbıyık, 202: 420).
252
ECONOMIC AND BUSINESS ISSUES IN RETROSPECT AND PROSPECT
Mareel Meciar, Kerem Gökten, Ahmet ArifEren
Table 8.
The Goods and Products in Import Activities between Turkey-Soviet Union,
1925
(TL)
Exported Goods and Products The Equivalent of TL
Cereals 871.571
Caviar 741.204
Fish 134.557
Petroleum Products 1.065.889
Coal 1.214.898
Cement 521.687
Carpet 548.586
Match 257.147
Tire 252.323
Thread 8.173
Source:
İktisad Bülteni, 2018:
p.
18-19.
The imported goods from Soviet Union in 1925 did not differ so much in the period of 1923-27 which is also
the subject of this study.
As
it is seen in Table 8, while petroleum products and coal was the highest imported
products, cereals and caviar followed them. In addition to this, cement had an important share within the imported
products because it is a requirement for the problem of sheltering in a newly founded country. The imported goods
and products from Soviet Union were generalIy towards the sectors of energy and construction.
Figure
1.
The Change of Imports and Exports between Turkey-Soviet Union by Years
..
....
~
..
_.
~~
.
..........
_
.
1923 1924 1925 1926 1927
_Import _Export ~Totallmport ~Total Export
it
is seen that Turkey generalIy had the foreign trade deficits in the period of 1923-27. Although there are several
reasons for this condition, it is possible to explain this condition with some reasons like Turkey is a newly founded
and unorganized state, the Treaty of Lausanne has birıding dauses and a protective customs policy could not
be applied since Turkey aimed not to scare foreign capitals. A general decrease is seen in 1925. Since European
States began to apply a protective foreign trade policy and the effects of 1929 Depression partialIy appeared, such
decrease was amatter of Turkey.
253
THE FINANCIAL RELATIONSHIPS BETWEEN TURKEY AND SOVIET UNION IN EARLY REPUBLlCAN PERIOD:
THE EXAMPLE OF THE JOURNAL OF "iKTisAD BÜLTENi" 1924-1925
Ali Gökhan GÖLÇEK, !şıl Şirin SELÇUK (Phd), Altuğ Murat KÖKTAŞ
5. Conclusion
Ottoman Empire could not apply an independent policy due to the capitulations in both foreign trade and
customs. Since the view of Ottoman Empire to the foreign policy was developed in the form of the provision of
products which was not domestically produced or could not be produced suffidently, the domestic industrialization
remained at the low levels.
in
the end, Ottoman Empire could not fıt in the new world order, and ceased to exist.
In one sense, Turkey was in a position of an inheritor state of Ottoman Empire and she faced several problems in
the period of her foundation. Besides the sociocultural and economic destruction from World War I, the batdes
against occupant states for the national independence forced the hand of the state very deeply in terms of fınance
and administration. In this period, an event occurred which probably changed the course of history, and Russian
Empire was falIen with revolution and Union of Soviet Sodalist Republics was established. This condition caused
to arise certain conditions both positive and negative for Europe and Turkey.
Since Soviet offidals contemplated to enforce their own regime in a newly founded Turkey, they established dose
contacts with the legitimate government of that period, Ankara government. In this manner, the connections had
been established mutualIy for the solution ofboth political and economic problems through committees and treaties
had been made. The economic cooperations were accompanied by the establishment of dose political relationship.
Hence, Turkeyand Soviet Union signed the Trade and Maritime Agreement in 1926 for this purpose. Afrer this
agreement, it was agreed that
Iktisad Bulteni
would be published. This journal would be discussed the trade of
Turkey-Soviet Union and would be active in Turkey as welL. In consideration of the data of Turkish Statistical
Institute, it is seen in the study that the data of
Iktisad Bulteni,
which was dated 1926, was confırmed. In this
regard, it is also presented that the economic journals take an important place in the historical background.
As
a result of conducted exarnination, while Soviet Union comprised of the low part of total foreign trade volume,
only %2.5, she became an important alIy for the early republican period with her critical moves. TurkeyespedalIy
had problems in the energy sector, and she provided this requirement with Russia by importing petroleum and
coal, and the certain parts of cereal products also imported from Russia just like in the Ottoman Empire in order
to ensure the domestic consumption. At this point, the exported product dasses to Soviet Union were mostly
fruits and leather just like in the period of Ottoman Empire as welL.
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