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Marshall Plan - Research Paper Example

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The Marshall plan which was officially known as the European Recovery Program(ERP) was an initiative developed by America at the end of WWII whose aim was to help the European economies to recover hence overcoming the soviet communism which threatened to take over(DeCONDE, 2002,…
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Download file to see previous pages The WWII also produced the most radical change in international power structure in over 500 years.
The ERP lasted for four years from the April of 1948. (WERNER, 2011, p402). America was responding to the problems and strife faced by the European nations, e.g. the rebuilding of devastated infrastructure by removing trade barriers hence modernizing industries and in the whole making Europe regain its prosperity once again.
In the early stages the soviets were offered inclusion in the plan however they declined since they viewed acceptance of the offer would ultimately mean a US control over the soviet communism albeit a small degree(GILLON,2012, p18)
Although Europe was aware that there were mixed motives behind the American aid plan, the European countries eagerly embraced the plan. On 12th July 1947 the following countries and others met in Paris to create the CEEC (committee of European Economic Cooperation), Austria, Denmark, Belgium, Greece, France, Ireland, Iceland, Luxemburg, Italy, among others (SULLIVAN, 1997, p16).
At any one time there were 150 American ships plying the trade routes carrying the much needed commodities for factories to resume production. The factories were able to employ workers who in turn had the power to purchase goods, in a sense the European were given a new lease of life (MEE, 1984, p248). Between the years of 1948 – 1952, tons of fuel, food and finished products crossed the Atlantic to Europe. There was a rise in industrial production which reached the previous levels before the war by 1959.ERP was noted to have had the best impact in West Germany, here the foreign trade was doubled between the years 1949 & 1950and grew again by ¾ the following year. Steel production grew from 2.5 million tons to 14.5 million tons, unemployment decreased to nearly zero and houses were built hence West Germany could support its growing ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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