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8 The War Economy and the War Industries

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Chapter Summary

On their own initiative, factories and shops began to produce war materials. Everyone had ideas and made enthusiastic offers. But it was all disjointed, inefficient, sterile. Spanish arms were manufactured in other regions: Toledo, Sevilla, and Oviedo, to name just a few. The outbreak of war created a new demand and drove the Catalans to use their ingenuity in converting peacetime industry. Tarradellas proposed the creation of the War Industry Commission to direct and regulate the industry, and he presided over it from its formation on 7 August 1936, defending it against every challenge. Once created, the War Industries Commission had to organise itself in order to accomplish the tasks with which it was charged. For the specific task of manufacturing arms, the Commission divided its activities into three sections: chemical industries (detonators, explosives, etc.), metallurgical industries (arms, munitions, fuses, etc.), and aviation industries.

Keywords: aviation industries; chemical industries; metallurgical industries; Spanish arms; War Industries Commission



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