By Larry Butler
This can be a examine of the evolving dating among the British colonial nation and the copper mining in Northern Rhodesia, from the early phases of improvement to decolonization, encompassing melancholy, wartime mobilization and basic alterations within the nature and context of colonial rule. It explores the very important significance of Northern Rhodesian copper to British monetary and strategic pursuits, and to Britain's formidable post-war plans to combine its crucial African territories. one of the key subject matters addressed are modern debates at the possession of mineral assets and at the colonial state's accountability to advertise and keep an eye on mining improvement and the wealth it generated.
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Extra info for Copper Empire: Mining and the Colonial State in Northern Rhodesia, c.1930-64
109 The Company’s close interest in the government’s proposals was understandable, given Chartered’s ownership of the territory’s mineral rights, and its involvement as a substantial shareholder in the mining industry. In protracted discussions, the Company’s representatives focussed on Clause 28. As the leaseholder of Northern Rhodesia’s minerals, it was the Company, not the government, which granted the location holders the right to work any minerals. The BSAC objected that Clause 28, whose provisions it claimed would be unique to Northern Rhodesia, interfered with the Company’s right, giving the government confiscatory powers over private property.
94 An important implication of the government’s dependence on copper revenue, and of the fact that the industry was largely responsible for its own development since the mid-1920s, having received negligible state assistance,95 was that the government could hardly afford to adopt too robust a line in its dealings with the mining companies, even had it had the political will to do so. In practice, the copper industry was given a remarkably wide degree of latitude, and came to enjoy a good deal of autonomy in deciding how best to run its operations, maintaining what has been called a ‘discreet distance’ from colonial officials, a situation with which government was not necessarily satisfied.
120 34 Copper Empire Moreover, far from identifying opportunities for retrenchment, the report argued a serious need for increased government spending, especially on the territory’s rudimentary public social services. It pointed to the loss of revenue, despite the Copperbelt’s expansion, arising from double taxation and royalty payments. 121 Pim privately commented that Northern Rhodesia was ‘a distressful country’, and that ‘the native position is a very depressing one’. 123 Yet, at the same time, the mining industry was beginning to demonstrate its profitability.