Cross-border cattle marketing in Sub-Saharan Africa since 1990: geographical patterns and government induced change
This chapter aims to study the impact of government policies on cross-border cattle marketing in Africa. It analyses the extent to which this type of cross-border trade has been created, diverted or contracted as a result of government policies. The chapter portrays the geographical patterns of cattle trade in the pre-colonial, colonial and post-colonial periods. It examines the main reasons for the increase, decline or diversion of cross-border cattle trade and it specifically pays attention to trade and other policies. The volume of cross-border cattle trade in Sub-Saharan Africa, which is often long distance trade, became significant when the colonial economy developed. Population growth, export production and increased incomes triggered demand for meat in newly emerging consumption areas. Whereas colonial trade policies contributed little to this expansion in West Africa, government interventions in East and Southern Africa had more impact. However, despite the stronger grip of the state on cattle marketing in East and Southern Africa, much of the cross-border cattle trade in these regions was in the hands of private traders like in West Africa. In the post-colonial era, government interventions increased through the creation of cattle and meat marketing boards. However, in West Africa many of these boards never functioned properly. In East and Southern Africa their impact was substantial, still most of them were dismantled under structural adjustment programs. The chapter concludes that mainly changes in supply caused by (civil) wars and droughts, and changes in demand caused by rising and falling economic prosperity have had significant impact on cross-border cattle trade, which was accordingly created, diverted or contracted. Notwithstanding differences between West Africa on the one hand and East and Southern Africa on the other, government policies aiming at intervention in cattle marketing only temporarily and to a smaller extent affected cross-border trade. Slightly more important are general economic policies resulting for example in currency fluctuations. Private cattle traders are acknowledged for their remarkable responsiveness to both short and long term opportunities cross-border cattle trade, legal or illicit, offer to them.
|Publisher||Ashgate Publishing, Avebury(UK)|
de Haan, L.J., Quarles van Ufford, P., & Zaal, F.. (1999). Cross-border cattle marketing in Sub-Saharan Africa since 1990: geographical patterns and government induced change. Ashgate Publishing, Avebury(UK). Retrieved from http://hdl.handle.net/1765/22986