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Flashcards in Trade and Commerce (9) Deck (8)
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What percentage of Britians trade came from its colonies?

- India - 20% of Britians exports, worth £150 million in 1914
- Canada - provided 10% of Britain's beef and 15% of wheat by 1914 (Between 1900 and 1914, wheat land production increased six-fold)


Importance of trade in the Empire?

Empires economic importance decreased
- Imperial Federation League disbanded (designed to promote closer ties to colonies) in 1893
- In 1913 the Empire only made up 24.9% of its imports and 37.4 of its exports, the remainder were to other countries
- Britain mainly imported its wheat from the USA (30.7 million hundredweight) and Russia
- Total trade in 1896 was worth £745 million but the Empire was worth £183 million
- In 1897, all of tropical Africa only took 1.2% of British exports


How was British development affected by the Empire?

- Anti-Imperialists claimed the Empire was causing it to lag behind
- Britain lagged behind in chemical and electrical engineering
- Britain relied on rubber imports from the Congo whilst the French and Russians started their own synthetic rubber production in 1912
- The Empire was blamed for keeping the working conditions for workers behind
- One of these anti-imperialists was Hobson who wrote Imperialism in 1902 and that the Empire only benefited the rich capitalists


How much British investment went to the Empire?

- British overseas investment went from £2 billion to £4 billion between 1900 and 1913
- Most of it went to the USA and India
- Investments within the Empire were seen as dangerous as they could be used to build up rival manufacturers such as jute and cotton mills in India
- Colonial Loans and Colonial Stocks Acts of 1899 and 1900 facilitated infrastructure projects, including rail links in Lagos and Mombasa
- Forced other nations to adopt the gold standard
- By 1908 very few countries still used the silver standard


Who was an avid Pro-Imperialist?

Joseph Chamberlain
- Conservative Colonial Secretary (1895-1903
- Convened the 1902 London Colonial Conference
- Discussed creating closer economic ties through an imperial customs union (protective tariffs against imports from non-imperial nations)
- He developed an 'imperial preference' as he believed that colonies could be relied upon more


What was the reaction to Chamberlains ideas?

- He was met with heavy resistance from the manufacturers who preferred free trade and mercantilism
- 'Imperial Prefernce' was openly dismissed in the 1906 general election when the public overwhelmingly supported the Liberals and their free trade


Colonial opposition to British trade?

Before the outbreak of war in 1914:
- Australia, New Zealand and South Africa imposed import tariffs to support their nationalist interests over their loyalty to Britain
- Canada had made economic ties with Germany, France, Italy and Japan
- British goods were boycotted in India under swadeshi (self-sufficiency) which started in 1905


Economic decline from 1890

1880s overtaken in Steel production by USA
Late 1890s - trade deficit