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Архівні документи
Центральна Рада, УНР (1917-1918 рр.)

Economic agreement between Ukraine on the one hand, and Germany and Austria-Hungary on the other hand. Signed at Kief, 23 April, 1918.
/Deutsche; English/

(23 квітня 1918 р.)

Economic agreement between Ukraine on the one hand,
and Germany and Austria-Hungary on the other hand.

Signed at Kief, 23 April, 1918.

[Translation. German summary of the text
as published in the “Neue Freie Presse”

The Austro-Hungarian Commission, which under the leadership of Ambassador Count Forgach, in cooperation with the German delegation, was instructed to carry on the negotiations foreseen in the Brest Peace Treaty for the reciprocal exchange of goods, terminated its labors when on 23 April the economic agreement come to between the Ukrainian People's Republic on the one hand and Austria-Hungary and Germany on the other hand had been signed. The Commission returned to Vienna on 26 April to take up as speedily as possible the necessary work which must be performed on our part to give practical effect to the agreement.

The treaty consists of a number of separate agreements. The accords, which were concluded both in the interest of Austria-Hungary and Germany, expire, in the sense of the provisions of the Peace Treaty, on 31 July, 1918.

The most important separate agreement is that dealing with grains, podded grains, fodder, and seeds. With regard to the furnishing of these items, an agreement was reached for the organization of storing them in the Ukraine and a treaty made anent the supplying of them. Accordingly, the prohibition decree issued by the Russian Government with regard to traffic in grains is abrogated, and wholesale and retail commerce in grains and the other mentioned goods is again permitted in properly organized form in the Ukraine. This organization which under the name of “National Bureau of Grains” is already in operation and consist of the members of the agricultural exchanges, farm tenants, owners of mills, and agricultural associations. In the cooperation of all these forces for the purpose of collecting and storing, a guarantee is provided for the securing of the goods, in so far as it is possible to bring this about through a commercial organization.

The quantities which the Ukraine is to furnish to Austria-Hungary amount to 500,000,000 hectometers up to the end of July, whereof definite portions have been agreed upon for each month. The three central granaries as well as the Austrian Central Purchasing Company have, with the approval of the Ukrainian Government, established in Kief, a German – Austro-Hungarian agricultural central bureau upon which devolves the carrying out of the treaties concluded with regard to the necessities of life. Austria is represented by the director of the Prague branch office of the Military Bureau for Grain Traffic, Governmental Councillor Heindl, and Herr Lippmann; Hungary is represented by Herr Lorant. This central office began operations some days ago. Mr. Hermann Reif, Vice President of the Military Bureau for Grain Traffic will remain in Kief until the initial difficulties of the supplying agencies have been overcome. The moving of grain and of milled products, especially in regard to the supplies available in the various storehouses and mills, has already begun; at present more or less large quantities of square barley, buckwheat, and millet have been shipped. The collecting of stores of grain may be expected to assume larger proportions only by the beginning of May, for the farmers are at present still busy with spring cultivation. Above all, too, must be overcome enormous difficulties connected with the gathering and transportation of stores incident to the Revolution and not yet entirely surmounted. The arrival of considerable quantities may, therefore, if transportation can be quickly arranged, be realized only about the end of May.

A further important agreement concerns the furnishing of eggs. The Ukrainian Government has obligated itself to supply, up to 31 July, 1918, several hundred millions of eggs, and to exert itself to increase, as far as practicable, the quantities until now promised.

Another agreement concerns the supplying of beef cattle. The securing of the eggs of beef cattle will be effected through the organizations established by the Ukrainian Government. If the latter should not supply the stipulated monthly quantities of grain, cattle, and eggs, the German – Austro-Hungarian agricultural central office will be entitled to engage in the independent purchase of these articles through their representatives.

As regards the supplying of potatoes, vegetables, dried vegetables, sauerkraut, and onions, the Central Powers were granted the right of free purchase.

The supplying of bacon and sugar is reserved for a special agreement.

The protocol entered into with regard to the supplying of raw materials provides for agreements relative to means for facilitating the supplying of special timber important for our industries. In the category of textile raw materials, the exportation for flax straw has been assured. On the other hand, because of the lack of other material for spinning and the large local need of textiles in the Ukraine, exportation into our country of raw material for spinning, such as flax, cotton, and wool, has not been brought to discussion.

Traffic in wool of Ukrainian origin which is to be put through refilling processes within the territory of the Central Powers with a view to its being used for finished manufactured articles has, in principle, been provided for.

With regard to rags, the Central Powers have been given the right to purchase and to export such supplies of rags as there may be in the Ukraine.

As regards the procuring of iron ores, an agreement was reached to the effect that up to 31 July the exportation of 371/2 million poods (1 pood = 16 kilograms) of iron ore is assured. Attention was also given to securing manganese ore.

Finally, the basis was laid for the exportation of old iron from the Ukraine.

All those raw materials which are the subject of the special agreements referred to and drafted in the form of protocols are granted free traffic with regard to commerce and exportation.

As against our demands, which in the first place relate to necessities of life, the Ukrainian Government requested that it be supplied with industrial products. In the first place, the wishes so urgently presented on the part of the Ukraine with regard to the supplying of agricultural machinery and implements were given due consideration. In the next place, supplies to meet the Ukrainian needs were tentatively promised for such articles as the Central powers, due regard being had for their own interest, are in a position to deliver. The entire traffic in goods between the Central Powers and the Ukraine will, up to 31 July, be placed under a far-reaching national monopoly which the Ukrainian Government will endeavor to carry through in accordance with the principles of its domestic policy.

As has already been made known, a fixed exchange ratio (1 Krone = 50 Copecks) has been agreed to up to 15 June, 1918 for the settlement of the national treaties anent merchandise.


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