Constraints on cotton production in Northern Rhodesia : The case of Fort Jameson area, 1900-45
Mwalukanga, McPaison George
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The period 1900 to 1939 witnessed increased British efforts to establish cotton growing for export in Northern Rhodesia, However, the industry did not expand to viable proportions. The official explanation for the failure of the industry was set down first and foremost to pests' ravages. This, therefore, is a study of the failure to establish a viable cotton growing industry in Northern Rhodesia. In this study, I argue that the cotton growing industry in Northern Rhodesia was mainly thwarted by a combination of socio-economic and technical factors.Firstly, the industry was starved of trained manpower and finance. Secondly, unfavourable marketing conditions manifested themselves in the absence of adequate ginning and baling facilities, inefficient transport system, and low and fluctuating prices. Thirdly, settler monopoly of agriculture and the production of other cash crops, greatly undermined the cotton growing industry. Finally, the industry was short of labour due to the Southward (Southern Rhodesia)migration of labour, and competing labour claims of African and other capitalist enterprises within the territory.