Soviet Union: Hard Cash for Hard Times

Hard Cash for Hard Times

Never mind country dachas or four-door Ladas. Soviet authorities figure the best incentive for greater agricultural yields is U.S. dollars or British pounds or German marks. Under an experimental program announced last week, the government will pay foreign cash to growers on state-run farms for excess harvests of wheat and other crops. The hard cash will enable farmers to purchase goods that no amount of rubles can buy, such as sophisticated farm equipment -- or videotape recorders.

Loosening restrictions on Soviet citizens' access to foreign currencies is not just another glasnost gambit. If the Soviet Union hopes to feed itself, it...

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