Alternate History

Alexander Program (French Trafalgar, British Waterloo)

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The Alexander Program, also known as the Imperial Russian State Economic Project (Императорского Русского государственного экономического проекта, or Imperatorskogo Russkogo Gosudarstvennogo Jekonomicheskogo Proekta, was major program in Russia that extended for over twenty years, between 1810 until 1831. The Program provided loans and tax breaks to local and foreign business to set up shop in the empire, with a particular focus on heavy industry, mines, roads and later railways. in all, over 12 billion rubles were spent through the program, and managed to quickly accelerate the industrialization of Russia to great heights.

The program was particularily promoted by Czar Alexander I, and it was mostly due to his persistence and influence, managed to get the program started. His successor, Nicholas I, began the process of winding down the program in 1828 due to the high costs and rapidly declining rates of return. However, the program had the effect of establishing a strong foot hold into Russia, and due to the liberation of the serfs in 1809, an enormous pool of labor was available. Poor working conditions and low pay, as well as the chronic housing shortage in the cities meant that the serfs, many of whom left their plots of land to find work in the cities actually starved, until Alexander, in a move that shocked many in 1821, forced all business that received funds from the state to increase the work wage enough so that people would be able to feed, clothe and shelter themselves, which, it was argued, would help the factories produce more.

In retrospect, many believed without the Program, the industrialization of Russia would have taken roughly 50 years to reach the same point, and would help in allowing Russia to expand its power of Eastern Europe and Alyseka. Later, during the era after the Stock Market Crash of 1931, a plan based off of the first, the Nicholas II Plan, was implemented in 1934 to help Russia recover from the effects of the Great Depression. A new plan, the Russkaja Respublika Proekt po Vosstanovleniju (Russian Republic Recovery Project) was started in 1949 to try to restart the economy after the Third Global War.

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