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Economic Relations between Nazi Germany and Franco’s Spain 1936–1945$
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Christian Leitz

Print publication date: 1996

Print ISBN-13: 9780198206453

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: October 2011

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198206453.001.0001

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Nazi Germany’s Struggle for Spanish Wolfram and Allied Economic Warfare

Nazi Germany’s Struggle for Spanish Wolfram and Allied Economic Warfare

Chapter:
(p.170) 5 Nazi Germany’s Struggle for Spanish Wolfram and Allied Economic Warfare
Source:
Economic Relations between Nazi Germany and Franco’s Spain 1936–1945
Author(s):

Christian Leitz

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198206453.003.0006

This chapter focuses on Germany's dependence on certain Spanish products, most notably wolfram, wool, and hides. It notes that the value of Germany's exports to Spain could not keep up with her imports from the country, particularly when Allied pre-emptive buying pushed up prices of Spanish goods. It further notes that the significance of wolfram (or tungsten) for Germany's war effort—and, for the Allies, the importance of denying Germany access to wolfram—is explicable in terms of its multiplicity of uses. It explains that wolfram has the highest melting-point of all known metals, possesses a high tensile-strength, is heat resistant and is normally used in connection with other ferro-alloys to produce tool steel such as high-speed steel. It emphasizes its importance in the armaments industry for the production of gun barrels and artillery shells and Germany is the first nation in the Second World War to use wolfram in the production of ammunition.

Keywords:   wolfram, wool, hides, exports, tungsten, Allies, high-speed steel, armaments industry, ammunition

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