Labour and land in Ghana, 1874-1939: a shifting ratio and an institutional revolution

The Second Industrial Revolution created markets for new products for Ghana, rubber and then cocoa beans. Mechanised transport spurred the spread of cocoa planting. The paper estimates the resultant shift in factor ratios, and synthesises the data for prices of land-use rights and wages as the economy moved from land abundance to localised land scarcity. The consequences for factor markets were institutional rather than simply quantitative. For the first time markets in land use rights became widespread, while hired labour and farm pledging replaced slavery and debt bondage, as cocoa income made it possible for farmers to offer labourers sufficient inducement to enter the labour market.

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In: Australian economic history review : AEHR. - Sydney. - Vol. 47(2007), no. 1, p. 95-120
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