The profit criterion and the material incentives to labour based on it have also been extended to domestic trade. Under the old system, distribution was highly centralized, it was tightly divorced from production by direct controls and turnover taxes — and, in general, trade played a passive role. Producer goods were distributed by central agencies on an allocational basis laid down in detail in directive plans. As a rule, only consumer goods were handled by trading enterprises. It was commonly accepted that under socialism trade should not be allowed to control production as this would interfere with planned development. Of the five major divisions of material production, trade was considered to be least important, the level of personal earnings in trade was well below the national average, there was a very high labour turnover and the public rating of employment in trade was near the bottom of the occupational ladder.1
KeywordsInternal Trade Socialist Country Retail Prex Material Incentive Wholesale Trade
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