Send Page
To A Friend

The 1940 IG Farben Patent for the “European Reich”

A memorandum dated 20 July 1940 was transmitted by order of defendant von Knieriem concerning: “1. Suggestions for the Peace Treaty as regards the protection of industrial rights" and, "2. Position of the German Reich patent in a European economic sphere under German control.” Under the second item the memorandum said:

The position of the German Reich Patent in a European economic sphere under German control.

“The peace treaty will cause far-reaching changes in the political and economic structure of large parts of Europe. One can perhaps assume that under German leadership a Greater European Area (Europaeischer Grossraum) will be established, which besides Greater Germany will include a number of additional states each retaining its own government. This Greater European Area will represent an economic unit, and possibly will later have a uniform system of customs duties and currency. One could not possibly retain this diversity of laws for the protection of industrial rights in such an economically unified area * * *

“The most complete solution which could be regarded as ideal would be to create one uniform patent for the entire European area under German control by regulating the formal and material patent right by a single law, the development of which would be reserved to the German legislator, and the Reich Patent Office would remain in existence as the only patent authority.

“1. Of course the idea is to extend the German patent over the entire area * * *

“4. * * * In order to ensure uniformity of decision, only the Reich Supreme Court should act as the court authorized to handle appeals with respect to legal issues; suits for nullification and perhaps, following the Austrian example, also problems concerning dependency, should be judged only by the Reich Patent Office and by the Reich Supreme Court * * *
On 3 August 1940, Farben transmitted to the Reich Economic Ministry its “New Order Plans,” in a letter signed by defendant von Schnitzler. It is a comprehensive report dealing generally with “the situation of the world economic forces which may be expected in the new order of the international chemical market,” in which it was said:

“2. * * * This major continental sphere will, upon conclusion of the war, have the task of organizing the exchange of goods with other major spheres and of competing with the productive forces of other major spheres in competitive markets-a task which includes more particularly the recovery and securing of world respect of the German chemical industry. * * *

“The part which is arranged according to countries, includes primarily those countries with which negotiations concerning a fundamental new order may, in keeping with the military and political developments, be expected within a reasonable period of time under the armistice or peace terms, to wit: (a) France, (b) Holland, (c) Belgium/Luxembourg, (d) Norway, (e) Denmark, (f) England and Empire.”
The same report contains amore detailed discussion about “the position of I. G. Farbenindustrie concerning the question resulting from the Franco-German relationship in the chemical field in regard to production and sales.” In the course of the discussion of the New Order with reference to France is the following significant language:

“ * * * It will, however, appear all the more justifiable in planning a major European spherical economy, again to reserve a leading position for German chemical industry commensurate with its technical, economic, and scientific rank. The decisive factor, however, in all planning relative to this European sphere will be the necessity of securing determined and effective leadership in the discussions which must necessarily be conducted with the other major spherical economics outside of Europe, the contours of which are already distinctly drawn at this time.

“In order to guarantee that the chemical industry of Greater Germany and the European Continent can assert itself in such discussions, it is urgently required clearly to appreciate the forces which, in the world market, will be of decisive importance after the war.

“ * * * As a matter of basic principle, therefore, we are of the opinion that the French chemical industry should retain its own existence in the coming new order, but that the artificial barriers which have been erected against German imports by means of excessive import duties, quotas and the like, should be removed. It will likewise be necessary to bass ourselves on the premise that, in general, exports of the French chemical industry should be maintained only by way of exception and insofar as they had already formally been established, i. e. prior to the beginning of the world economic crises, and that French activities should consequently be restricted to the French domestic market! * * *

“The preceding survey on the development and situation of the individual branches of the French chemical industry plainly shows that the chief obstacle blocking German interests in the French market was to be found in the field of commercial policy. If, therefore, participation in the French market - the remaining colonies, protectorates and possible mandated territories included - corresponding to the importance of the German chemical industry is to be built up and maintained, then this aim can be achieved only by a fundamental change in the forms and media of French commercial policy in favor of German imports.
* * * * * * * * *


Home | About | Contact | Terms of Use | Privacy Policy
RSS Feed