The “New Course” in Agriculture

Georgii Malenkov, Speech to the Supreme Soviet of the USSR. August 8, 1953

 

… The urgent task is to secure in the next two or three years, by generally improving agriculture and further consolidating the collective farms organizationally and economically, the creation in our country of an abundance of food for the population and of raw materials for the light industries.

For the successful accomplishment of this task, the Government and the Central Committee of the Party consider it necessary to carry out a number of major measures to ensure the further swift progress of agriculture measures, in the first place, which will provide a greater economic incentive to collective farms and collective farmers in developing lagging branches of agriculture…

In addition to providing a greater material incentive to collective farmers to develop the common enterprises of their collective farms, the Government and the Central Committee of the Party have decided thoroughly to correct and revise the wrong attitude which has arisen towards the personal subsidiary husbandry of the collective farmer [the private plot]…

Owing to the defects in our policy of taxing the personal subsidiary husbandry of the collective farmer, the latter’s income from his personal subsidiary husbandry has diminished of late years, and there has also been a reduction in the amount of livestock, especially cows, in the personal possession of the collective farmers, which runs counter to our Party’s policy in collective farming.

Accordingly, the Government and the Central Committee of the Party deem it necessary substantially to reduce the obligatory delivery quotas levied on the personal subsidiary husbandry of the collective farmers, and have decided, as Minister of Finance Comrade Verve has already informed you, to change the system of levying the agricultural tax on collective farmers. The monetary tax payable by them is to be reduced by an average of about one-half, and also arrears in agricultural taxes incurred in past years are to be cancelled ….

Source: Soviet News, 15 August 1953.

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