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The Economic Development of Latin America since Independence$
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Luis Bértola and José Antonio Ocampo

Print publication date: 2012

Print ISBN-13: 9780199662135

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2013

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199662135.001.0001

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The Economic History of the Young Independent Republics, 1810–70

The Economic History of the Young Independent Republics, 1810–70

(p.48) 2 The Economic History of the Young Independent Republics, 1810–70
The Economic Development of Latin America since Independence

Luis Bértola

José Antonio Ocampo

Oxford University Press

Chapter 2 shows the poor economic performance of the Latin America republics during the decades after independence compared to the more advanced countries. This performance is related to the difficulties involved in building the new nation-States and the delay with which the liberal reforms were introduced, including the late abolition of slavery in some countries. Performance was better in peripheral areas where the reforms advanced fastest. Until the transport revolution arrived by the last quarter of the XIX century, the geography of the region also continued to be a constraining factor. Growth was extremely segmented: despite the successful export growth in some areas, the major share of population lived in backward and stagnant areas, leading Latin America as a whole to lag vis-à-vis the industrial world.

Keywords:   independence, colonial heritage, geography, industrial revolution, regional divergence, population growth, institutions, tansportation, economic growth, exports

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