Military production during World War II

Military production during World War II

Overview
Military production during World War II was a critical component to military performance during WWII
World War II
World War II, or the Second World War , was a global conflict lasting from 1939 to 1945, involving most of the world's nations—including all of the great powers—eventually forming two opposing military alliances: the Allies and the Axis...

. Over the course of the war, the Allied countries
Allies of World War II
The Allies of World War II were the countries that opposed the Axis powers during the Second World War . Former Axis states contributing to the Allied victory are not considered Allied states...

 outproduced the Axis countries
Axis Powers
The Axis powers , also known as the Axis alliance, Axis nations, Axis countries, or just the Axis, was an alignment of great powers during the mid-20th century that fought World War II against the Allies. It began in 1936 with treaties of friendship between Germany and Italy and between Germany and...

 in most categories of weapons.


This table shows the relationships in Gross domestic product (GDP)
Gross domestic product
Gross domestic product refers to the market value of all final goods and services produced within a country in a given period. GDP per capita is often considered an indicator of a country's standard of living....

, between a selection of Allied and Axis countries, from 1938 to 1945, counted in billion international dollars and 1990 prices.


Notes on the table (remember that the distribution values are rough estimates):
  1. France-Axis distribution: 1940: 56%, 1941-43: 100%, 1944: 58%.
  2. Italy distribution: 1938-1943: 100% Axis, 1944-1945: 100% Allies
  3. Japanese values are included in Axis totals for all years in order to illustrate potential contribution
  4. Soviet Union-Allies distribution: 1939: Only 67% due to the pact with Germany, but none to Axis.
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Encyclopedia
Military production during World War II was a critical component to military performance during WWII
World War II
World War II, or the Second World War , was a global conflict lasting from 1939 to 1945, involving most of the world's nations—including all of the great powers—eventually forming two opposing military alliances: the Allies and the Axis...

. Over the course of the war, the Allied countries
Allies of World War II
The Allies of World War II were the countries that opposed the Axis powers during the Second World War . Former Axis states contributing to the Allied victory are not considered Allied states...

 outproduced the Axis countries
Axis Powers
The Axis powers , also known as the Axis alliance, Axis nations, Axis countries, or just the Axis, was an alignment of great powers during the mid-20th century that fought World War II against the Allies. It began in 1936 with treaties of friendship between Germany and Italy and between Germany and...

 in most categories of weapons.

Gross domestic product (GDP)



This table shows the relationships in Gross domestic product (GDP)
Gross domestic product
Gross domestic product refers to the market value of all final goods and services produced within a country in a given period. GDP per capita is often considered an indicator of a country's standard of living....

, between a selection of Allied and Axis countries, from 1938 to 1945, counted in billion international dollars and 1990 prices.
Country 1938 1939 1940 1941 1942 1943 1944 1945
Austria 24 27 27 29 27 28 29 12
France 186 199 164 130 116 110 93 101
Germany 351 384 387 412 417 426 437 310
Italy 141 151 147 144 145 137 117 92
Japan 169 184 192 196 197 194 189 144
Soviet Union 359 366 417 359 274 305 362 343
British Isles 284 287 316 344 353 361 346 331
USA 800 869 943 1 094 1 235 1 399 1 499 1 474
Allied Total:
Allies of World War II
The Allies of World War II were the countries that opposed the Axis powers during the Second World War . Former Axis states contributing to the Allied victory are not considered Allied states...

1 629 1 600 1 331 1 596 1 862 2 065 2 363 2 341
Axis Total:
Axis Powers
The Axis powers , also known as the Axis alliance, Axis nations, Axis countries, or just the Axis, was an alignment of great powers during the mid-20th century that fought World War II against the Allies. It began in 1936 with treaties of friendship between Germany and Italy and between Germany and...

685 746 845 911 902 895 826 466
Allied/Axis GDP: 2.38 2.15 1.58 1.75 2.06 2.31 2.86 5.02


Notes on the table (remember that the distribution values are rough estimates):
  1. France-Axis distribution: 1940: 56%, 1941-43: 100%, 1944: 58%.
  2. Italy distribution: 1938-1943: 100% Axis, 1944-1945: 100% Allies
  3. Japanese values are included in Axis totals for all years in order to illustrate potential contribution
  4. Soviet Union-Allies distribution: 1939: Only 67% due to the pact with Germany, but none to Axis. During 1940 Soviet Union is not counted at all. 1941: 44% is distributed to the Allies (after Operation Barbarossa), 1942-1945: 100%.
  5. US values are included in Allied totals for all years in order to illustrate potential contribution & Lend-Lease
    Lend-Lease
    Lend-Lease was the program under which the United States of America supplied the United Kingdom, the Soviet Union, China, Free France, and other Allied nations with materiel between 1941 and 1945. It was signed into law on March 11, 1941, a year and a half after the outbreak of war in Europe in...

  6. The Allied total is not the immediate sum of the table values; see the distribution rules used above.
  7. The Axis total is not the immediate sum of the table values; see the distribution rules used above.
  8. Allied/Axis GDP: This row shows the relation in GDP between the Allies and the Axis; i.e. 2.00 means the Allied production was 2 times larger than the Axis. Please note that only a selection of countries are included in the table. The distribution of values into alliances is described in the previous notes.


Table data source:
Harrison, Mark, "The Economics of World War II: Six Great Powers in International Comparison", Cambridge University Press (1998).

Summary of production



System Allies Axis
Tanks and SP guns 227,235 52,345
Artillery 914,683 180,141
Mortars 657,318 100,000+
Machineguns 4,744,484 1,058,863
Military trucks 3,060,354 594,859
Military aircraft total 633,072 278,795
Fighter aircraft 212,459 90,684
Attack aircraft 37,549 12,539
Bomber aircraft 153,615 35,415
Reconnaissance aircraft 7,885 13,033
Transport aircraft 43,045 5,657
Training aircraft 93,578 28,516
Aircraft carriers 155 16
Battleships 13 7
Cruisers 82 15
Destroyers 814 86
Convoy escorts 1,102 -
Submarines 422 1,336
Merchant shipping tonnage 33,993,230 5,000,000+
Other:
Pillboxes, bunkers (steel, concrete - uk only) 72,128,141 tonnes 132,685,348 tonnes
Estimate Concrete runways 10,000,000 tonnes


Note that most Battleships and Cruisers were produced before the war and many served through its entirety.


Vehicles and ground weapons

Country Total tanks and self-propelled guns Tanks and self-propelled guns Artillery Mortars Machineguns Military trucks
Soviet Union 105,251 92,595 516,648 200,300 1,477,400 197,100
United States 88,410 71,067 257,390 105,055 2,679,840 2,382,311
United Kingdom 27,896 124,877 102,950 297,336 480,943
Canada 5,678 2150 43,552 251,925 815,729
Other Commonwealth 5,215 46,014 37,983
Germany 67,429 43,920 159,147 73,484 674,280 345,914
Japan 2,515 13,350 380,000 165,945
Italy 2,473 7,200 83,000
Hungary 500 447 4,583

Aircraft

Country Military aircraft of all types Fighter aircraft Attack aircraft Bomber aircraft Transport aircraft Training aircraft
Soviet Union 143,145 63,087 37,549 21,116 17,332 4,061
United States 324,750 99,950 97,810 23,929 57,623
United Kingdom 131,549 49,422 34,689 1,784 31,864
Canada 16,431 1740 1134 2670
France 4,016 1,597 280 712
Other Commonwealth 3,081
Germany 119,307 55,727 12,539 18,449
German aircraft production during World War II
The following is a list of aircraft production by Germany during World War II by type and year. Note that some figures may not be accurate, and it is not comprehensive. Aircraft variants of different roles are listed separately...

 
3,079 11,546
Japan 76,320 30,447 15,117 2,110 15,201
Italy 11,122 4,510 2,063 468 1,769
Hungary 1,046
Romania 1,000

Naval ships


Country Aircraft carriers Battleships Cruisers Destroyers Convoy escorts Submarines Merchant tonnage
Soviet Union 2 25 52
United States 22 (141) 8 48 349 420 203 33,993,230
United Kingdom 14 (25) 5 32 240 413 167 6,378,899
Canada 1 303 3,742,100
Other Commonwealth 3 60+ 2,702,943
Germany 0 2 17 23 1,141
Japan 16 2 9 63 167 4,152,361
Italy 0 3 6 6 28 1,469,606

Large Scale Civil Engineering Construction

Country Concrete bunkers and pillboxes
United Kingdom 72,128,141
Germany 132,685,348

Materials

Country Coal Iron Ore Crude Oil
Soviet Union 590.8 71.3 110.6
United States 2,149.7 396.9 833.2
United Kingdom 1,441.2 119.2 90.8
Canada 101.9 3.6 8.4
Germany 2,420.3 240.7 33.4
Japan 184.5 21.0 5.2
Italy 16.9 4.4
Hungary 6.6 14.1 3.1
Romania 1.6 10.8 25.0


See also

  • American armored fighting vehicle production during World War II
    American armored fighting vehicle production during World War II
    This page details tank production by the United States of America during World War II.- Stuart series :By the time the United States entered the Second World War in 1942 they had only two tanks ready for combat the M1 Combat Car and the M2 Light Tank. Originally both tanks only came equipped with...

  • Army-Navy ‘E’ Award
    Army-Navy ‘E’ Award
    The Army-Navy "E" Award was an honor presented to a company during World War II for excellence in production of war equipment. The award was also known as the Army-Navy Production Award. The award would consist of a pennant for the plant and emblems for all employees in the plant at the time the...

  • German armored fighting vehicle production during World War II
    German armored fighting vehicle production during World War II
    This article lists production figures for German armored fighting vehicles during the World War II era. Vehicles include tanks, self-propelled artillery, assault guns and tank destroyers....

  • Rosie the Riveter
    Rosie the Riveter
    Rosie the Riveter is a cultural icon of the United States, representing the American women who worked in factories during World War II, many of whom produced munitions and war supplies. These women sometimes took entirely new jobs replacing the male workers who were in the military...

  • Soviet armored fighting vehicle production during World War II
    Soviet armored fighting vehicle production during World War II
    During the Second World War from the start of the war between the Soviet Union and Germany on 22 June 1941 Soviet armoured vehicle production was necessary to replace losses due to combat and the loss of production facilities....

  • World War II aircraft production
    World War II aircraft production
    This table lists aircraft production during World War II by country and year.See Also:*German aircraft production during World War II*United States aircraft production during World War II...

  • World War II
    World War II
    World War II, or the Second World War , was a global conflict lasting from 1939 to 1945, involving most of the world's nations—including all of the great powers—eventually forming two opposing military alliances: the Allies and the Axis...


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