chapter  XII
59 Pages

The Schuman Plan

For such ambitious programmes to be justified it would be necessary for the high domestic level of demand for steel to be sustained once the immediate reconstruction boom was over and for that boom not to tum into a period of contraction . The American administration was sternly critical of the pro­ grammes , seeing them as mercantilistic and nationalistic, inasmuch as each Western European country was interested in maximizing its own output of steel irrespective of the optimum distribution of the industry in Western Europe as a whole . This was the period in which the first major Dutch and Norwegian steel works , at Ijmuiden and Mo-i-Rana, were planned . Congress expressed the view, at the prompting of the ECA, that at a time when demand for steel in the USA was so high that in spite of record output levels steel rationing had nevertheless to be maintained, it would prove impossible for European countries to obtain the inputs to make so much steel .