Socialist Accumulation, Law of

The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Socialist Accumulation, Law of


the economic law that expresses the objective necessity for the systematic accumulation of a certain part of the national income and its utilization to expand and qualitatively improve production, to increase the wealth of socialist society, and to create the conditions necessary for the all-around development of the members of society. Socialist accumulation is fundamentally different from capitalist accumulation: in socialist society not capital but socially owned wealth is accumulated.

Unlike capitalist accumulation, which exacerbates the antagonistic contradictions in bourgeois society, ultimately leading to its destruction, socialist accumulation resolves the nonantagonistic contradictions in society and leads to the strengthening of the socialist system and the gradual transition from socialism to communism. Under socialism, the scale and rate of accumulation increase substantially, owing to public ownership and planned economic development, constantly rising labor productivity, and the elimination of parasitic forms of consumption. In addition to resolving the contradictions between the actual volume and structure of social wealth, on the one hand, and the possibilities for satisfying the increasing needs of the population, on the other, the operation of the law of socialist accumulation guarantees full employment and creates the necessary conditions for overcoming the social and economic heterogeneity of labor. The growth of the national income has been accompanied by absolute increases in the accumulation and consumption funds. In 1965 the accumulation fund totaled 50.2 billion rubles; in 1970, 84.2 billion; and in 1974, 98.2 billion. An optimal correlation between the accumulation and consumption funds presupposes a distribution of the national income, such that an increase in the scale of accumulation establishes high, stable rates of growth in the consumption fund.

The steady annual increases in capital investments in the economies of the USSR and the other socialist countries serve as evidence of the high rates of socialist accumulation. The advantages of the socialist system ensure a high rate of accumulation and contribute to the steady, increasingly complete satisfaction of individual and social needs for consumer goods among all members of society.


Marx, K. Kritika Gotskoi programmy. In K. Marx and F. Engels, Soch., 2nd ed., vol. 19.
Engels, F. Anti-Duhring. Ibid., vol. 20. (The section “Sotsializm.”)
Lenin, V. I. “Po povodu tak nazyvaemogo voprosa o rynkakh.” Poln. sobr. soch., 5th ed., vol. 1.
Sotsialisticheskoe nakoplenie: Voprosy teorii iplanirovaniia. Moscow, 1973.
Protsess sotsialisticheskogo nakopleniia. Edited by M. P. Osad’ko. Moscow, 1975.


The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.