Home HISTORY FORM 2 The Social and Economic Effects of the Abolition of Slave Trade

The Social and Economic Effects of the Abolition of Slave Trade


Effects of the abolition of slave trade.

Loss of independence, the suppression of slave trade led to loss of independence that is to say,
legitimate trade which provided equally profitable business to both European and African
traders. Many ship owners diverted their ships from transporting slaves to transporting raw
cotton and raw sugar from Brazil and America.
It accelerated the coming of European missionaries to East Africa who emphasised peace and
obedience thus the future European colonisation of East Africa.

Disintegration of the Sultan Empire: This is because it loosened the economic and political
control which the sultan had over the east African nations. His empire in East Africa therefore
began to crumble. This gave opportunity to other ambitious leaders like Tippu-Tip to create
independent state in Manyema, where he began selling his ivory and slaves to the Belgians in
Closing of slave trade markets, for example Zanzibar in 1873 following the Frere treaty signed
between sultan Barghash and Bantle Frere.
Islam became unpopular as many converted to Christianity

African societies regained their respect and strength as they were no longer sold off as
Generally, abolition of slave trade was a catalyst to the partition of East Africa whereby Britain
took over Kenya, Zanzibar and Uganda while Germany took over Tanganyika.

British Occupation of South Africa via the Cape.

British at the Cape.

Britain took control of the cape during the era of mercantilism in Europe. At the end of 18th
century the British became interested in seizing the cape colony from the Dutch. During 1793
France invaded the Netherlands. King William V. sought refuge in Britain and also asked for
protection for Dutch colonies and trading interests. During this time, the British already
controlled India and the trade between India and Europe. In 1795 the British occupied the cape
twice for a short period of time. From 1806 onwards especially when the Napoleonic wars ended
in 1815 the Britain made a formal purchase of the Cape from the Netherlands for six million
pounds sterling. Therefore British started to settle at the Cape in 1806.

Motives for British interests at the Cape.

  • To increase colonies: The British wanted to increase and expand her spheres of influence
    following this she decided to occupy the Cape.
  • Industrial revolution in Europe, following this British wanted to increase sources of raw
    materials, labour, and markets for her industries since the Cape were very productive.
  • Trade interests, Britain did not want another European power to control the Cape because
    that would interfere the smooth flow of trade between Britain and India.
  • The South African Cape was strategically located. It was an appropriate place for British
    ships to stop during their voyages to or from India. They could get fresh supplies adwater for the
    reminder of their journey.



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