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Nepman to Be Given Status of Artisans if They Invest in Factories Near Towns

The Jewish Nepmen will be considered as artisans if they will employ their capital to build factories on a shareholding basis, near the various towns and villages, it is announced here. This change of status is being offered as a means of relieving the situation in the towns and villages, and thereby providing employment for declassed artisans and former Nepmen.

The factories will have to work on the collective principle, it is stated. It is hoped that American landsmanschaften will be interested in purchasing shares in such factories, inasmuch as most of the workers employed will be Jews.

The first town to take up this project is that of Karsnostav, district of Wolyn, where the Jews have applied for permission to build a glass factory on a shareholding basis, with the Nepmen holding 35 per cent, of the shares, the artisans, 45 per cent., and the declassed, 20 per cent.

A brick factory in Stepanetz, Ukraine, is planned on a similar basis. The sum of $160 received from a Landsmanschaft in America will be invested in this factory.

The Jews of Volotschisk are anxious to build a mirror factory where one hundred workers can be employed. The sum of 25,000 roubles is necessary. The local Soviet is willing to provide 5,000 roubles of that sum, while the rest of the money must be raised through selling shares. This movement, which is similar to private concessions, may bring the Nepmen back to the towns, since their status as legalized shareholders provides them with artisan privileges and gives their children the right to enter schools. At the same time, their shares can be sold whenever they change their minds.

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