starting a game in South America (Brazil first, now Colombia) I can't figure out how to make factories work. First, how do capitalist decide to open one? I see projects stay there forever with no capitalists helping.

So basically, these questions I guess can help me start...

1) At the start of the game, what should I do regarding factories? Start them on my own (possibly changing ruler party so I can create them) or let capitalists do it.

2) How do I make them earn money? In my Brazil game, after a while and some conquests, I had 8 factories... After a government change, they all closed as they were not profitable. What can I do to help?

3) Tariffs/Taxes: Should I keep tariffs low (or negative) so factories and capitalists spend less to build stuff? or higher so I get money and then can lower taxes on capitalists so they build/invest in factories?

4) How does the stockpile work? Should I keep it at 50+ so factories can operate, or keep it low? I see most of it goes towards maintaining soldiers, so during peace should I lower it to like nothing? or does it affect factories?

2 Answers 2


Industrialising is one of the key challenges of the early game, especially for nations that start out with little or no industry to speak of. The Industrialising Guide from the Victoria 2 wiki may prove useful.

1) In the early game, build few factories - no more than one per province. At this point factories will struggle to turn a profit - labour is scarce, raw material costs are high and factories themselves are less efficient than your artisan POPs. Instead of trying to build a lot of factories, keep a small number that you can keep open using subsidies and focus on creating the conditions to make them profitable. Ideally try to build factories that require raw materials that you produce within your own territory, and that will help with the industrialisation process. Cement and steel factories may be good starting choices.

2) Raise factory profits by creating a good industrial base. To do this you need to increase factory efficiency and secure supplies of raw materials. Increasing the literacy of your pops (using national focus on clergymen) will serve the dual purpose of boosting your research rate, and making it easier to get more clerks and capitalists for future factories. Invest in technologies that increase the efficiency and throughput of your factories as well as your RGOs - this will increase the supplies of raw materials for your factories, which will also help make them cheaper. Railroads will help with both factory and RGO throughput, so research and build these if you can. Eventually your factories should start becoming more profitable and your educated workforce should start moving from the RGOs to the more lucrative factory jobs. National focuses on craftsmen can will help this.

3) Setting low or negative tariffs will help your factories by effectively subsidising the cost of any raw materials they need from from the world market. Likewise, setting tarrifs too high will stave them of profits and resources, potentially putting smaller industries out of business. Set them negative early on, then think about raising them as your industrial base becomes more stable. Setting low taxes for capitalists may help open more factories, but low tariffs will help keep them open.

4) The National Stockpile budget covers the cost of goods needed by the government, not your capitalists. This includes supplies needed to maintain your Army and Navy, goods to construct units, and the goods needed for construction of forts, naval bases and government built factories and railroads. After factories are constructed they are responsible for buying the goods they need using their own cash reserves. However, factories that are being subsidised by the government use government funds to buy their goods when they run out of money. I'm not actually sure whether the Stockpile includes the cost of those goods or if they're calculated separately - some investigation may be required here.

  • my first factory I built for cement, thinking it would be needed for everything else, but looks like coal is very rare (nothing in South or Central America that I could see, just a province or two in North America) so it was always running at a loss (maybe also because I had my tariff at 10% didn't help)
    – Rodolfo
    Commented Feb 21, 2014 at 19:42
  • Hmm, good point. Perhaps timber-based industry would be better in this situation - lumber and paper, moving on to furniture if lumber does well. Canned food may also work, if you can get the iron.
    – raveturned
    Commented Feb 21, 2014 at 21:22

If you're playing Philippines, there are a lot of works you need to do.

  1. Everytime there is an election, set your new ruling party to Traditionalista. This will help you to build your factories in each provinces (make sure only one factory per each island: Luzon, Visayas and Mindanao). Always agreed for Free trade (eventhough it will angered the party), this will help your investors to invest more money in your country. You're the only civilized nation in Southeast Asia. *Build your own and invest to every projects given by investors.
  2. In order to maximize your strength and prestige, you to need conquer Brunei, Atjeh and Johore in exact year of between 1841 to 1845. This will help you to reorganize and be known to the public mass.
  3. Research the Early Railroad and focus your attention to education. Education and cultural ideology will help you to increase your research and help you to enhance the civilization you've been held.
  4. Once you have completely conquered this nations, you need to start to build your army and always remember to respect the religion of beliefs of each sides. You need to aware that the ruling party must have 60% Liberal (because liberals help to sustain the economy and make the colonies to follow your league.)
  5. Enjoy the game. Just make sure to be friendly to Japan because in year 1860's, you'll be attack by this nation if you're ships are not yet ironized and your military doesn't upgrade yet.
  • In factories, focus first to stockpile some raw materials. You need to check also your budget and always leveled up those things.
    – Gamer1896
    Commented Aug 31, 2018 at 13:09

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