Atlantic Slave Trade and its effect on economy

Atlantic Slave Trade and its effect on economy

The Atlantic Slave Trades Effect on Africa’s Economy The African continent has long been a source of slaves for different regions of the earth. From as early as the ninth century Muslim countries benefited from the use of African slavery. Furthermore, the use of slaves has a long history within the continent of Africa itself. In the latter half of the fifteenth century, the meaning of slavery changed forever with the discovery of the New World and European trade on the coast of Africa. In 1472, Portuguese explorers became the first Europeans to arrive in Africa. They brought with them brass and copper, and exchanged these goods for pepper, cloth and slaves. For a short time the Portuguese enjoyed monopoly over the trade with Africa, then in the sixteenth century the English arrived followed by the French and other European nations. The English soon dominated the business of removing young Africans from their native soil to work in mines or on plantations in the New World. This triangular trade between Europe, the New World and Africa allowed the European countries to develop their economies at the expense of the African people. The effects of the Atlantic slave trade on Africa’s economy were devastating because it permanently created an economic system that diverted resources from the indigenous people. Africans became the ultimate solution to the labor shortage in the New World. The demand for African slave labor arose from the development of plantation agriculture and the demand for miners. Africans had a higher immunity to malaria and yellow fever compared to the Europeans and Native Americans. They were also skilled laborers with experience in tropical agriculture. These factors made them well suited for plantation life and the demand for them continued to increase from the seventeenth century onwards. At first, the Europeans captured Africans by raiding coa…


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