V. I.   Lenin



Written: Written between June 20 and July 2, 1921
Published: First published in 1959 in Lenin Miscellany XXXVI. Printed from the original.
Source: Lenin Collected Works, Progress Publishers, 1976, Moscow, Volume 45, page 189b.
Translated: Yuri Sdobnikov
Transcription\Markup: R. Cymbala
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Point-by-point explanation of your letter of 20.VI:

1) Agree to grant concessions for all four enterprises (Kyshtym, Ekibastuz, Ridder, Tanalyk). 2) We allow sidings to the concessions; we shall accept some form of ensuring the concessionaire’s interests on the main line. 3) Bargain about the term. 4) We shall make available some Soviet money; bargain. 5) Bargain about the royalties. Never mind the oil.[2] 6) Agree to guarantees of immunity.

We shall not grant concessions unless they agree to let us have 50–100 per cent of the foodstuffs and equipment they bring in for themselves, with guaranteed payment.


[1] Written in connection with the talks started in London in mid-June between People’s Commissar for Foreign Trade L. B. Krasin and British industrialist and financier Leslie Urquhart, who before the October Revolution had been Chairman of the Russo-Asiatic Consolidated Company and the owner of large mining enterprises in Russia (Kyshtym, Ridder, Tanalyk and Ekibastuz), on the granting to the latter of concessions for the working and extraction of minerals. The draft telegram, with some additions, was approved by the Politbureau of the R.C.P.(B.) Central Committee on July 2, 1921.

From August to September, the talks were carried on in Moscow. Lenin marked out the principal terms of the concession and kept a close watch on the course of the negotiations and the activity of the commission set up to study the enterprises to be leased (see Lenin Miscellany XX, p. 188; XXIII, pp. 63–69; XXXV, pp. 219–23; XXXVI, pp. 311–12).

A draft concession agreement was worked out in the course of the talks. But in October 1921, Urquhart broke off the talks and joined the anti-Soviet campaign, in the hope of pressuring and blackmailing the Soviet Government into making serious concessions.

The talks with Urquhart were resumed in 1922. See this volume, Documents 750, 754, 768, and also present edition, Vol. 33, pp. 387–88, 404–05.

[2] Referring to the 29 per cent royalties on the oil conceptions, L. B. Krasin believed 25 per cent royalties to be acceptable.

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