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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:Potential for diversification? The role of the formal sector in Bechuanaland Protectorate's economy, 1900-65
Authors:Bolt, JuttaISNI
Hillbom, EllenISNI
Year:2015
Periodical:Economic history of developing regions (ISSN 2078-0397)
Volume:30
Issue:2
Pages:95-124
Language:English
Geographic term:Botswana
Subjects:economic development
agricultural history
animal husbandry
cattle
colonial period
Link:https://doi.org/10.1080/20780389.2015.1066671
Abstract:While Botswana since independence has experienced impressive economic growth and development this progress has not been accompanied by economic diversification and endogenous growth. In this article the authors focus on the colonial period and investigate to what extent the formal sector of Bechuanaland Protectorate (colonial Botswana) had the potential to constitute the basis for a diversification of the dominating cattle economy away from its dependency on exporting a single natural resource good - beef. The authors base their study on colonial archive sources and anthropological evidence which they use to: examine labour market structures; estimate welfare ratios and surplus; and discuss government spending. They find that the demand for skilled labour and human capital development was low throughout the colonial period and that the private sector generally lacked the economic strength and dynamics to develop alternative and/or complementary sectors. Further, they find no evidence of demand driven diversification, neither stemming from private sector consumption and investments, nor from government spending on economic activities outside the cattle sector, infrastructure and human capital development. App., bibliogr., sum. [Journal abstract]
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