News | Published:

Britain's Contribution to the War Effort

Nature volume 158, page 783 (30 November 1946) | Download Citation



THE third and final report on Mutual Aid (Cmd. 6931. London: H.M. Stationery Office. 2d. net), with its record or mutual aid from July 1, 1944, to tha termination of the various agreements, and with its statistical report of mutual aid throughout the War has Keen published opportunely. It is fitting that this record of the magnitude of the assistance which Great Britain gave to the United States, the U.S.S.R. and other allies, as well as received, should be made public now that fresh demands are being made to avert a possible collapse of Western Germany. At the height of the War, the United Nations were aiding each other freely on the scale of about £4,500 millions a year, and over the three years up to the end of the War, mutual aid was extended by the United Kingdom to fourteen countries, and totalled £2,078,500,000. Excluding oil obtained under Lend-Lease, the value of supplies, services and capital received by the Allies amounted to 8 per cent of the national income of Great Britain and 16 per cent of her total war expenditure. The largest proportion of this—60 per cent—went to the United States, 15 per cent went to the U.S.S.R. and the remainder to European allies and China. The total value of reciprocal aid to the United States up to September 1, 1945, is estimated at £1,241,402,500, and of this total 26 per cent took the form of servicing U.S. Forces, 18 per cent is accounted for by the cost of building capital installations, the remainder being in respect of food, materials and equipment. More than half the services provided to American Forces is accounted for by shipping services.

About this article

Publication history





    By submitting a comment you agree to abide by our Terms and Community Guidelines. If you find something abusive or that does not comply with our terms or guidelines please flag it as inappropriate.

    Newsletter Get the most important science stories of the day, free in your inbox. Sign up for Nature Briefing