Financing Industrial Development in Southern Rhodesia, 1940-1979
Victor Gwande is currently a PhD Candidate in Africa Studies at the International Studies Group, University of the Free State, South Africa. His research interests, business and economic history, Southern African History and youth, politics, governance and democracy issues. He has published in regional and international historical journals.
The development of the manufacturing sector in Southern Rhodesia has been written from variegated perspectives. These perspectives range from its origins, the role of the state while others focus on specific sectors such as textile, iron and steel. Even more, others take a historical overview of the sector encompassing all of the mentioned dimensions. What is missing in the existing historiography thus far is the financing of the industrial development. Using archival material housed at the National Archives of Zimbabwe, the Smith Papers and International Financial Institutions’ reports, this paper examines how the development of the manufacturing industry was capitalized. By tracing the sources of investment finance for the sector, the paper contributes to the discourse on Southern Rhodesia’s economic, business and financial history. Besides, focusing on the capitalization of the sector allows for an analysis on the role of capital in setting the agenda for Southern Rhodesia’s industrialisation.