BEHIND THE SCENES
I am René Baudouy, banker of the French
The fact is that the shipping route
Embassy in Constantinople. In 1892 the
competition keeps the profit low and in the
Ottoman Ministry of War assigned me to
end the construction cost is 3 times higher
construct a railway line 510 km long. To
than the receipts. Fortunately, the Sultan
finance the project, I founded a company in
has granted our company the privilege to
Paris. The shareholders are French, German
hold the railway revenues for 99 years.
and the Imperial Ottoman Bank in London.
The start-up capital is 15,000,000 francs*.
We have another 50,000,000
francs in bonds, a form of
long-term debt which the
company promised to pay.
The cost per km rises to
15,000 francs. It will be
covered through an extra
10% tax, already imposed by
t h e S u l t a n t o t h r e e
*Daily wages of workers in 1890 in Paris are approximately 1.8
Euros; in Drama 0.40 Euros.