The Grozny-Tuapse Pipeline appears to be the first major crude oil pipeline in the USSR, built in 1927 - 1928. (Note, the Russian version of that article has more information.) Tuapse is a port city on the Black Sea, and crude oil was exported there.

I would like to know how much crude oil the USSR exported in the 1930's, and what did the Soviets receive in exchange for oil? Obviously to build such a large pipeline, they must have been exporting a lot. Note the capacity of the pipeline is stated as 1.5 Mt per year, but that does not mean it was always used at maximum capacity.

  • This could be interesting for you (in Russian, if you wish I can translate). Volumes are in million metric tons, prices are in roubles. I have no idea how USSR was actually paid (gold? roubles? pounds?).
    – user58697
    Commented Feb 25, 2018 at 23:24
  • @user58697 Thanks, this answers the first half of the question. Very interesting that the majority of exports was refined products, almost no crude oil at all. I hope someone can find the payments too. Maybe it's in your link, down at the bottom where it says, Foreign trade of the USSR for 1918-1940. Part I? It's a pdf and google translate does not work on pdfs. Maybe you can skim through it looking for payments? If you find it and turn it into an answer, I will accept it.
    – DrZ214
    Commented Feb 26, 2018 at 5:31
  • Here tried my best.
    – user58697
    Commented Feb 26, 2018 at 20:34

2 Answers 2


A big picture is summarized in this table. More detailed data are here; the relevant data are at pages 129 for the years 1930-1934 and 163 for the years 1935-1939; items 21 (Нефть сырая, crude oil) and 22 (Нефтепродукты, refined products), among them (numbers below refer to table rows):

  • 220 gasoline
  • 223 kerosene
  • 224 diesel fuel
  • 225 heavy fuel oil(? мазут)
  • 226-227 grease
  • 22903 paraffin
  • 22911 asphalt and (oil) coke
  • 22913-22925 other products

The first column is Units (metric tons). Two columns for each year are Amount and Total Price in thousands of roubles.

The (international trade) rouble in thirties was bound to US dollar. See here for the exchange rates. I still don't know how the payments were arranged.

(Edited to include a screen shot)

enter image description here

  • I do not think you are tabulating the values correctly, so I added a screen shot. The column with "220, 223, 224, 225" does not appear to be values. That column is unlabled, but I suspect it's just an ordinal list like "1. 2. 3. etc". Where it says "Наименование товаров", that means "description of goods". The actual amount and price should be under each year, not the leftmost column.
    – DrZ214
    Commented Feb 27, 2018 at 21:15
  • Yes for a leftmost column I meant the second one (Единицы измерения). 220 etc are rows (e.g. 220 бензин is gasoline)
    – user58697
    Commented Feb 27, 2018 at 21:17
  • I think you should edit your answer then, because when you say something like "• 224 diesel fuel", to english/americans it sounds like you're saying something like "224 tons of diesel fuel (were exported)". I didn't want to edit it myself, other than adding a screen shot, because I'm still not 100% sure I'm reading everything correctly. I don't know Russian, I just use google translate.
    – DrZ214
    Commented Feb 27, 2018 at 21:24

Here's a pretty good scholarly article detailing exactly the answers you are looking for including not just how much they exported but whom they traded with and what they received in return.


  • 4
    The article does not say how much oil was exported per year in the 1930's. I did not even see any prices for the oil sold.
    – DrZ214
    Commented Feb 25, 2018 at 3:14

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