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vaal war, the too rapid industrial development in Russia, the Chinese troubles, the German financial panic, and the recurrent bad harvests in Russia. Probably each one has contributed to the result, but whatever the cause, it seems clear that if sufficient capital flowed into Russia, by means of a foreign loan or otherwise, to enable the railway programme to be recommenced, a large proportion of money so spent would flow to the Southern iron industry, and would bring to it a renewal of prosperity which would probably last for some years. At present the revival awaits this influx of capital.
From the most accurate information which the author was able to obtain, the following railways have actually been decided upon by the Government, some or all of which will probably be commenced as soon as the financial situation admits of it.
1. Trans-Siberian Railway, completion.
2. Trans-Siberian Railway, completion of relaying with heavier rails.
3. St. Petersburg to Odessa, direct line.
8. Krivoy Rog ore region to Donetz Coalfield. 9. Kief to Kovel.
The total estimated cost of above is about 466,000,000.
The crisis in the coal industry is, perhaps, more acute even than in the iron and steel industries, owing to the added effects of overproduction, and consequent increase of stocks.
Owing to the extensive and almost reckless manner in which Belgian capital has been in vested in South Russia, the former country has suffered very heavily from the present crisis. Belgium being a small but rich country, with much greater wealth than can be profitably invested at home, has been a large investor in the South of Russia, which, thanks to the high profits made in former years, seems to have exercised a peculiar fascination for its financiers. It must be remembered, however, that much so-called Belgian capital is really French capital, companies being formed therewith in Brussels owing to the somewhat laxer regulations there existent.
Recent quotations from the Brussels Bourse of Russian securities show that steel works debentures average 73 per cent. of par value, and ordinary shares 30 per cent.
The Russian Government is using every
endeavour to introduce foreign capital, and especially English and American, and for this purpose makes copious publications in the English language, dealing with the industria) possibilities of Russia.
The present situation, however, contains some encouraging features. Signs are not wanting that public confidence is being restored in Russia, and prices have already shown a tendency to increase and inquiries to become more numerous. Again, the trying period through which the iron industries are passing, doubtless has done, and will do, much to teach the salutary lesson of economy of management, to which too little attention was paid during the preceding prosperous years. Cost of production in general, and in particular that item with the comprehensive title of “General Expenses,'' has, under the stress of stern necessity, undergone sensible reduction. Superfluous officials have been discharged and numerous leaks stopped up, with the result that in one case that came under the author's notice a company which during the prosperous times found it difficult profitably to sell steel for £10 per ton, make it pay, after the introduction of such economies, with the price reduced to £8 per ton.
Coinage.-Again the coinage of the country has during the past few years been placed on a gold basis. The amount of gold coins in circulation has increased enormously, while the use of paper money, except of large denomination, has practically ceased. This has tended to make the rate of exchange fixed, and has obviated the disadvantages and uncertainties of fluctuating values. Thus, whereas between 1877 and 1896 the value of the rouble varied from is. 7d. to 2s. 9d., since the reform of the coinage it has been practically fixed at 25. 1 d. The Emperor's Rescript (see Appendix VIII.) will show that the value of sound currency is fully appreciated by the Government.
In Russia, where money is scarcer than in Western Europe, it is doubly desirable to have ample working capital for operating iron and steel works. Long credit is the rule, three months being usually expected by customers. If three months' bills are received from debtors and discounted at banks, a high rate of discount is charged, and it is, therefore, economical to have sufficient working capital to render such discounting unnecessary. This can be set off to some extent by demanding three months' credit from those who supply the raw materials, but the same reasons make
this undesirable. On the other hand, ready figures for the United Kingdom and United cash must always be found for wages and | States are 1'03 and 1'oi respectively. railway charges. The interest paid by banks The greatest benefit that could befall the on deposits is usually 33 per cent.
Russian iron industry would be the growing up Labour.-The native labourers in Russia of a steady public demand for iron and steel, are cheap, patient, and obedient, but they are which would make the Government orders of less energetic and efficient than the more secondary importance. Russia would then be highly paid workmen of Western Europe, | able to make the most of her marvellous which tends to counterbalance the advantage natural mineral resources and cheap labour, of cheapness. They are also lacking in and the iron industry would become a great mechanical instinct and initiative and are source of national wealth to a country which is somewhat servile, as might be expected from at present too purely agricultural. So long as a people liberated from ser fdom only 40 years the importance of agriculture is relatively overago. Education is, from a Western point of whelming, so long will the recurrent bad harview, somewhat primitive, and the village vests mean grave financial and political emcommune system, involving a peasant owner- barrassment to the Government. The growth ship of land, by discouraging a peasant from of public demand for iron and steel is, howmoving about, tends to narrow his ideas and ever, a thing of the future. It must be prevent his mental development.
remembered that the old-time division of Russian villages are sometimes of great Russian society into two classes, i.e., size, one called Tomatovka, passed through nobles and peasants, still obtains to some by the author, being no less than 10 miles extent, 80 per cent. of the population being long, and rather in the nature of a town than peasants, while the middle classes, which in a village. The houses are, however, spread out the Western nations comprise the enterprise and evenly, each with its own garden, and not, as virility of the community, are in Russia only would be the case with a similar town in Eng. i 9 per cent. of the total, and are largely conland, crowded together in the centre. Each fined to the cities. peasant owns, in addition to the garden For centuries Russia has looked abroad for, attached to his house, a share of the common and has welcomed io her shores, men of energy land in the village, the amount per peasant and brains, to initiate and carry on the entervarying from 8 to 27 acres. If he leaves the prise and manufactures, which in other counvillage and goes to another, he resigns his! tries would spring up naturally from within. share of the land, while he is unlikely to be This is testified to by the fact that so many admitted to equal privileges in his new home. Russians in leading positions have non-Russian He must, therefore, either stay where he is, or names. emigrate, for which an official permit is Railway Rates.-The system of railway rates required, or go to the large towns, where he is in Russia is worthy of imitation by the rest of handicapped by his lack of education. To | Europe ; it is a modified Hungarian zone add to his troubles, while the amount of land system, and was introduced about 1895. It is available has not increased, the number of based on the logical principle widely recogpeasants is increasing, so that each man's nised in commerce, of giving a reduction for share has become smaller. The village com- , quantity. Both for goods and passengers the mune system, which was established to ensure mileage rate varies inversely with the total the peasant against want, is not by any means distance. Thus to convey iron ore from the universally successful in its working
Krivoy Rog Mines to the iron works in the In former years the Russian peasant was Donetz district, a distance of 260 miles, costs very drunken, and often after he had spent all only 0:23 pence per ton-mile, while for short his money, would pledge his future crops or distances up to 66 miles, the rate is 0-316 labour to the publican. After failing to remove pence per ton-mile. In the passenger tariff, these abuses by numerous laws, the Govern the rates are still made in favour of the long ment took the bold step of taking over the journey, with the result that since the new manufacture and sale of spirits, which was system was introduced, the passenger traffic accomplished between 1895 and 1898. The has increased largely. result was that the consumption of spirits per Conclusion. — In conclusion, the South head, which in 1867 was 1•66 gallons, fell in Russian iron industry cannot, in the opinion 1897, even before the reform was completed, to | of the author, be considered at present as 0.93 gallons per head. The corresponding other than an artificial one, depending as it
does on the high tariffs to keep out foreign com- ! Although the South Russian district is now petition, and to a large extent on Government very much depressed, it has had periods of activity in railway construction for the demand. | great prosperity, and will doubtless have them Both are unnatural conditions ; and though a again. The market for its iron and steel proprotective policy is often of long duration, and, ducts is, however, likely to be purely internal as in the United States, not inconsistent with for some time to come, and in the author's great national prosperity, the single customer opinion the time when Russia will compete condition, involving a demand varying with the with other countries for the neutral markets of resources of the Government for the time being, the world, is as yet far distant. is somewhat hazardous.
Until the check received in 1900, the growth of Russian manufacturing industries, i.e., other
[The thanks of the author are due to the following than agriculture, was remarkable, the turn
gentlemen for kindly furnishing information and over increasing from £54,000,000 in 1887 to data :-Messrs. C. Foniakoff, E. Durrant, J. M. de £181,000,000 in 1897. The author refrains Zoltynski, E. Carez, V. Tahon, B. de Szyszkowski. from dogmatising as to whether this is because F. C. Moorwood, and F. Taylor, of the New Russia of or in spite of protection.
8 9 10
12 Hugbes, or New
Fig iron kussia Co......... Hughesofka 1 English i 900,000 1869 and steel 7 267,820 159,030 426,850 8,319 Dnieprovienne, or
209,980 · 170,580' 380,560 6,339 Briansk Metallurgical Co. ............. Ekaterinoslav 3 | Russian 1,701,005 1887
145,789 107,790 253,570 Russo. Belge Metal
Russo.! lurgical Co.......... Volintsevo | 4 | Belgian 1,579,296 1895,
2,713 Donetz - Urievkal
109,510 31,006 140,516 3,630
174,390 2,413 Taganrog Metal." lurgical Co.......... Taganrog 17 Belgian 1,189,522 1895
79,148 62,356 141,504 3,166 Nicopol - Marioupol
German Mining and Metallurgical Co. ..... Marioupol | 8 | Russian 789,684 1896
37,410 114,180 / 1,769 Pastoukof, or Soulinskie Works .... Souline 9. Private
38,738 25,284 64,022 3.004 Russian “ Provi. dence" Works ... | Marioupol | 10 | Belgian 1,784,189 1898
72,335 47,135 119,470 1,972 Makievskaia Works Makievskie
16,064 63,744 Gdantsevski, or
Krivoy Rog Iron
76,277 Krematorskova Metallurgical Works
15,059 Almaznaia Colliery Almaznaia Belgian
176 Kertch Metallu gical Works .... Kertch
2,274 Verkhne Dniepro
vienne Works...... Ekaterinoslav 17 Belgian 515,432 ... Bielaia Blast. Fur. pace Co. ..... Bielaia 18 Belgian 396,486 New do.
Totals ... 55 | 1 475,202*), 859,130* 2,334,332
297305 | I&00
• Later corresponding figures are as follows:-Pig Iron - 1991, 1,482,coo tons ; 1902 (rate of), 1,457,000 tons. Steel-1901, 984,000 tons ; 1902 (rate of), 894,000 tons.
I The limits allowed in manganese gres are oʻ18 per
cent. of phosphorus, and 8 per cent. of water, with a fine of 4d. per ton per i per cent. of water above 8 per cent. The price obtainable for ore is 8d. per ton per i per cent. of manganese up to 45 per cent. and is. 4d. per ton per i per cent. over 45 per cent., which would place a value on Richische ore of the above analysis of £2 per ton delivered at blast furnaces in the Donetz district.
APPENDIX VI. - Cost OF RICHISCHE MANGANESE ORE.
Per ton of washed
APPENDIX III.-ANALYSES OF KRIVOY ROG ORE.
Per cent. :. Per cent.
57.95 .. 63.55 Phosphorus ...... 0 095 .. 0.032 Alumina .....
2.484 . 10567 Lime ............
trace .. trace Silica ......
APPENDIX IV.-Cost OF COAL AND COKE.
Per ton of coal.
S. d. Getting .............
.. 3 111 Timber ........ Surface expenses ..., Repairs Transport to loading place ...... Grading ... General expenses
Per ton of
S. d. Iron ore, is tons ...
................ 22 4 Coke, 0.95 tons...................... 214 Flux, ton .... Labour, general expenses, &c. ........ 100
To this must be aaded the cost of coking 2 2 Making a total per ton of coal of .. 10 I
Or per ton of saleable coke of .. 13 10
The market value of coke is about 175. gd.
APPENDIX V.-ANALYSES OF MANGANESE ORES.
Total ................ 55 0 Taking the market value at the present exceptionally low figure of 63s. at the time of the author's visit, there is a profit of 8s. per ton. In 1899 the market value was 106s. Cost OF SPIEGELEISEN.
Per ton of Spiegeleisen.
s. d. Iron ore, 1 tons .....................
19 0 Manganese ore, 0:6 tons ..... Coke, 1-4 tons .............. Flux, i ton ..
... 28 Labour, general expenses, &c. ........ 17 2
Total ................ 94 1 Taking the market value of spiegeleisen at £65s. 6d., this yields a profit of 31s. 5d. per ton. Cost of FERRO-MANGANESE.
Per ton of Ferro-Manganese.
£ s. d. Iron ore, 1 ton .................... 0 I 11 Manganese ore, 2 tons ....... .. 4 19 0 Coke, 2} tons .............. 2 16 2 Flux, i ton ..............
.... 0 2 8 Labour, general expenses, &c. ...... 0 19 10
Richische ore .......... 52.63 0:127 | 7-2 Nicopol ore ...... 40:45 023 ..
Caucasus ore ............ 51:15 0:153 about 10 Foreign
Spanish (Asturiana)....... 58.35 Door 0.90 New Brunswick (Wad ore) 45.80 0.05536 Brazil....
55'02 , 0 0211:27
Taking the market value of ferro-manganese at the exceptionally low figure of 616 10s., this yields a
DISCUSSION. profit of £7 ios. 5d. per ton.
Professor C. LE NEVE FOSTER, F.R.S., said that he APPENDIX VIII.
had been for some time in Russia during the past year, IMPERIAL RESCRIPT FROM THE EMPEROR OF | and he had listened to the paper with great interest.
RUSSIA TO M. WITTE, MINISTER OF FINANCE. In speaking of the iron deposits in the Krivoy
Sergei Julievitch, in fulfilment of my order, duly | Rog district Mr. Head had said they were applied for by you, the Financial Committee dis. " boatshaped.” For his own part he thought cussed the present state of the money market in the word lenticular was more appropriate. connection with the communication on this subject He was sorry that the iron ore deposits of made by the Ministry of Finance, and, after careful Kertch were not mentioned by the author. He examination, presented to me the following unani. thought that those deposits might be larger mous conclusions :
than those at Krivoy Rog. With regard to “ I. Our money market bas of late been greatly the coal in the Donetz basin, Mr. Head said it was influenced by a combination of unfavourable circum friable and suffered from the weather. Now, was stances, the principal being the universal tightness in that due to frost, or was it found to be the same at the money market, increased by the present war other periods of the year when there were no frosts? between England and the Transvaal. The position Then was he accurate in his remarks with regard to has been further complicated by our bad harvests of the percentage of ash in the coke when he said that late years, and the consequent unfavourable balance the percentage was 10 while the coal used only of payment, and likewise by the unusually rapid showed from 3 to 7 per cent. Seeing that 73 per growth of our industries during the past few years. | cent. of coke was got from the coal it seemed to him Although in itself this industrial development is that the percentage of ash ought not to be so large advantageous to the country, yet under existing con- | as was mentioned. Mr. Head had given a very good ditions, it considerably increases the tightness in the illustration of a very large Portland-cement factory, money market.
thoroughly up-to-date. Would he explain whether the “ II. Of course, the concurrence of such extremely Russians were using any dust-preventing apparatus ? unfavourable conditions cannot but cause some em One great fault in this country was the terrible barrassment in our money market, but the embarrass | dustiness in connection with cement factories. In Germent would be much greater, were the country not many he had seen certain appliances used for keeping in a position to withstand it by a well-organised | down the dust. He had hoped to hear something monetary system. Our financial policy must there about the wonderful manganese deposits in the fore be directed towards the preservation of the Southern Caucasus. With reference to the manganese stability of the currency—a stability which is one of described in the Ekaterinoslav, Mr. Head stated that the most important conditions for the proper develop- owing to the absence of water the mineral was treated ment of State and national economy.
dry. Then later on he said it was washed. He "III. The present state of affairs does not call for could not reconcile the two statements. The views any universal extraordinary measures, while the of the pit shafts were interesting, but he thought particular measures, taken by the Ministry of Finance that shafts seven feet square, divided into four and the State Bank for the purpose of tranquilising compartments, two of which were used for cages, the money market and supporting certain respectable must be exceedingly small. The views shown of the firms, should, if necessary, be continued, without “ baraban" reminded one of the horse whims one overstepping the limits of the regulation of existing osten saw in Wales. The "baraban” was an interand firmly established relations.
esting example of a mining word which did not "IV. The suggestions of the Minister of Finance possess a German origin. In German the horse whim with regard to the necessity of revising the antiquated was called “pferde-göpel.” Probably the appliance laws affecting the Bourse and Joint Stock Com was in use before German miners were brought into panies, are decidedly opportune.”
the country. Speaking of the small rainfall in Approving of the Financial Committee's conclusions the Steppes, they were told that it amounted to only which endorse the expedience of the measures taken by 11 inches per annum, and that that was due to the you, I feel assured that in the present temporarily treelessness of the district. Did not the want of trees embarrassed state of affairs, you successfully guard mean that there was a want of rain ? He did not see the interests both of State and national economy. why the absence of trees should necessarily cause a
This is guaranteed by the enlightened experience, small rainfall. From what Mr. Head had said, the untiring energy, and skill which have always dis Russian employer looked upon the Government intinguished your management of the financial depart. spector of mines with totally different eyes from those ment, and which have won my confidence in you. of the English employer. He had been an inspector of I remain ever favourably disposed to you,
mines for nearly thirty years in this country, and in And sincerely grateful,, NICHOLAS, many cases he had found that his visit, after a fatal Given at Zarskoe Selo, December 8 (20), 1899. accident had occurred, had been welcomed by the em