|Posted by The Reunion Black Family on January 28, 2020 at 8:35 AM|
HOW IMPORTANT WAS THE AFRIKAN BLOOD CONGO COLONY FOR THE PARASITIC BELGIUM ECONOMY ? It was quite important for the economy in its post-WWII devastation What many don�??t know is that the West absolutely owes the DRC for the Allied victory in WWII. Without renewed slave labor, there have been no rubber, no uranium and a much more difficult East Africa campaign. 800,000 tonnes of copper were extracted. The Congolese Franc was coupled to the pound Sterling. While the forced labor and military rule petered off, it was replaced by voluntary technically mostly unforced, but the native economy was left disrupted by the heavy-handed intervention in it low paid labor and corporate rule. The profits henceforth flowed to the Brussels Stock Exchange rather than to the Allied war machine. Because people were relocated to where the jobs were, this caused them to be forced into the system of being dependent on monthly wages for survival (rather than on subsistence farming). Urbanization increased dramatically. For example the population for lisabethville (now Lumumbashi), capital of mine-rich Katanga, grew from 30,000 in 1930, to 50,000 in 1943 to 180,000 in 1957. The Congolese effort de guerre (war effort) didn�??t leave Belgium and especially her elite empty-handed. The Belgian government in exile, operating from London, could finance itself through a �??loan�?� of 3,3 billion Belgian francs (BEF) on behalf of the colony, which also paid for a private army the Piron brigade. According to the 10 years plan released by the Ministry of Colonies in 1949: The medium-sized and large companies have amassed ample liquidy during the past years of economic expansion, estimated at about 6 billion BEF in total. Exact number for the War years are missing, but the impetus is crystal clear. For instance the market capitalization of the Huileries du Congo Belge (palm oil extraction) increased from 350 million BEF in 1931 to 950 million BEF in 1947. The industrial agricultural Cultures au Congo Belge saw her market cap increase seven-fold between 1927 and 1947. The cotton producer Cotonco had financial difficulties in the 1930s, but expanded phenomenally starting from the war until independence in 1960. The mining giant Union Minière du Haut Katanga�??s share of preferred stock exploded from 8,905 Belgian francs (BEF) in 1929, to 49,225 BEF in 1954. The average profit margin for the colonial branches of the Société Générale conglomerate was 30%, while those of mining companies were even higher: 50�??60%. The years 1940�??1960 formed the epitome of that company, according to company historians. However THE most valuable profit was arguably realized in the medium term and at a higher level, by the decision of WWII�??s victors to leave the Belgian empire intact, in contrast to for example Dutch Indonesia and British India. A part of those profits were reinvested into the Congolese and Belgian economies through taxation and by the companies themselves. But not nearly enough, which was, together with police brutality, ultimately what most of the independence push was about.