India became a British colony following the 1857 uprising.British East India Company was set up to dominate India through its clever use of political strategy, military force. In 1858 India became a colony of the British Empire. Under the British rule, India suffered poverty, famine and lack of freedom which ultimately led to the Indian struggle for independence. The first Module therefore gives an overview of the Indian economy prior during British rule.


British period & Indian economy:

The Economy of India during the colonial era describes the economy of India during the years of the ‘British Raj’ from 1750- 1947. During this period, the Indian economy’s share of the world economy declined from 22% to 1-3%.

India in the pre colonial time had a stable ,efficient economy. There was adequate agricultural, trade – vast handicraft industries. The landowners were not landlords they only had the right to collect the taxes from the workers. India had large trade both within countries of Asian and Europe. There was a balance in imports and exports, the items imported in India were dried fruits, wool, dates , rosewater from Persian gulf; gold, coffee, honey from Arabia; silk, tea, sugar from China; paper, iron, copper, from Europe.

Structure of villages and town

Indian Economy in the pre – British period consisted of two divisions, namely a) Isolated & self-sustaining villages b) Towns which took care of Administration, Commerce , Handicrafts. The means of transport & communication were highly underdeveloped as the size of market was small.

  • Cobblers
  • Weavers
  • Goldsmiths
  • Carpenters
  • Potters
  • Oil Pressers
  • Washer men
  • Barber
  • Surgeons

The structure of Villages 

Three distinct classes existed in villages that were;Agriculturist; Hand–owning and Tenants.

Labor & capital needed was supplied by producer themselves out of their saving or village landlord or village money lenders. Credit agencies gave credit at exorbitant rates of interest. Only source of credit for peasants & artisans were money lenders and the peasants were forced to depend on the money lenders. Artisans & menials were mere servants of the village

Economic Consequences of British Conquest :

The British  rule can be divided into particular period of time; first the rule of East India Company ranging from 1757 to 1858.Second was the rule of the British government in India from 1858 to 1947. British conquest started in 1757 with the battle of Plassey and completed in 1858, during this period the British changed the techniques of production. The industrial revolution helped the British to sell machine made goods give great competition to Indian handicrafts. The British conquests led to break down of the village community partly by introduction of new land revenue system by the process of commercialization of agriculture

Impact of colonial rule of British on India agriculture

Agriculture was the one of essential and main stay of Indian economy. About 80% people were used to cultivate either as principal or secondary occupation. About 70% of the national income used to came from this agriculture side. Agriculture productions were mainly food grain and other crops such as oil seed, sugar cane used for domestic consumption, fiber crops and many more.

Process of Industrial Transition, Colonialism and Modernization

Tariff protection to Indian industries–  In 1923 the government  accepted the recommendations of the first fiscal commission  to gave protection to selected Indian industries against foreign competition. Between 1924 and 1939 several major industries were given protection  the government prominent among them being iron and steel industry , cotton mills , jute , sugar , paper ,pulp industry , matches etc . Indian industrialists took advantage of the policy of protection extended  the government ,developed the protected industries rapidly. They were able to capture the entire Indian market and eliminate foreign competition altogether in important fields.


Description of chief executive natural resources of Myanmar


Chief Natural resources of Myanmar

Since ancient times, the land known today as Myanmar has been famous for its wealth in natural resources of all kinds. Today, Myanmar’s natural resources include oil and gas, various minerals, precious stones and gems, timber and forest products, hydropower potential, etc. Of these, natural gas, rubies, jade, and timber logs are the most valuable and currently provide a substantial proportion of national income. To date, there has been a very low-level of systematic exploration of Myanmar’s natural resources due to lack of modern survey techniques.     I

According to official data, recent foreign direct investment in Myanmar has been concentrated in the oil/gas and hydro power sectors, with mining coming in third position by value. Investment commitments made in the 2010/11 financial year were approximately 30 times the rate of commitments made on average for the previous 22 years.


The main investors by country were Myanmar’s neighbors China (including Hong Kong) and Thailand, followed by South Korea, Singapore, and others. While the vast majority of people in the national workforce are subsistence farmers, the gas industry and the precious/semi-precious stone-mining industries have provided the largest incomes, with gas earning of $3.6 billion for 2011–2012 and precious stones earning of approximately $3.4 billion in 2010 from auction sales.
Despite a shortage of natural gas for the domestic market, most of the natural gas is exported. Currently all gas exports go to Thailand. Yet, a new 1,800-kilometer-long pipeline – which will cross the whole country, from Kyauk Phyu in Rakhine state to Kunming, China – will commence later in 2013


Myanmar is geologically very rich, and mining is significant as a large-scale industry and also in small-scale artisanal forms. Mineral occurrences cover all sectors, including base metals (gold, copper, silver, lead, zinc, tin, antimony, iron, etc.), industrial minerals, energy sources (mainly coal), gems (jade, rubies, sapphires, etc.), as well as “rare earth” minerals. Myanmar is perhaps best known for gold, jade, rubies, sapphires. It is estimated that in the past, 90 percent of the world’s rubies came from Myanmar. The state is currently aiming to control and manage all aspects of production and sale of jade and gems, but in this sector, as well as in the gold sector, large informal and illegal industries exist.


Despite being blessed with an abundance of natural resources, Myanmar’s citizens are among the poorest in Asia and lag behind their ASEAN neighbors in all aspects of human development. Myanmar’s natural resources were managed in unsustainable and transparent ways during decades of military rule and economic mismanagement. Lack of transparency in the past has raised many questions about potential misappropriation. Revenues were used for state needs, among them being military expenses to ensure the military’s control. While natural resources were being sold to neighboring countries, the local population was left empty-handed.


 Opium production in Myanmar has historically been a major contributor to the county’s gross domestic product (GDP). Burma is the world’s second largest producer of opium after Afghanistan, producing some 25% of the world’s opium, and forms part of the Golden Triangle. The opium industry was a monopoly during colonial times and has since been illegally operated by corrupt officials in the Burmese military and rebel fighters, primarily as the basis for heroin manufacture.


Production is mainly concentrated in the Shan -,Kachin states. Due to poverty, opium production is attractive to impoverished farmers as the financial return from poppy is 17 times more than that of rice. The yield during 2012 was 690 tons, valued at US $359 million.

Economic specialists indicate that recent trends in growth have the potential to increase the gap between the rich and the poor in the country, empowering criminal rackets at the expense of democracy

natural resource


Brief desciption to the Ancient The Indus valley civilization&Mohenjo Daro

Where is the Indus valley ?

The Indus Valley is on the border between India,Pakistan and Afghanistan.The main city may have been Mohenjo-Daro but it could have been Harappa.

To the West of Mohenjo-Daro are the Highlands.North East of Mohenjo Daro are the Himalayan mountains.

When was the Harappan Civilization at its peak in the Indus Valley?

The Indus Valley civilization lived in the Valley about 4000 years ago, 2600-1900 B.C. It was discovered by numerous scientists and archaeologists in 1921. Alexander Cunningham, the director general of the Archaeological Survey in India, visited the Harappan ruins to look at the Buddhist remains along with the next director of the ASI, John Marshall. They set up an excavation to investigate the mysterious ancient ruins. The dig began in 1920 led by archaeologist Rai Bahadur Daya Ram Sahni.   Many different art facts have been uncovered in the Indus Valleys main cities, Mohenjo-Daro and Harappa.

The Civilization in the Indus Valley

The people in the Indus valley formed the earliest urban civilization in  the sub Indian  continent and one of the earliest in the world.Another name for the Indus valley civilization is the Harappan civilization. The first excavations that were made in the cities of Harappa and Mohenjo-daro which were conducted in 1921-1922. Excavations also discovered that men and women dressed in colourful robes , the women also wore lipstick! For dinner it might have been hot bread served with barley or rice.  . The Indus valley civilization was a  wonderful pla

Why did the Harappan civilization decide to live in the Indus Valley?

The Indus Valley civilization may of lived there because of the Indus River which flows through the valley. It over-flowed every year leaving soil perfect for growing crops in. It could of also been used for transport and food such as fish. The Indus Valley was also well protected by the Himalayan Mountain Range.

Streets -Buildings

The Indus tribe lived in houses just like today. They where built from bricks and cement and must have been very strong because lots of these buildings are still standing today. They had a very complex city structure with one to two floors, to each building, yet there has been no evidence that the tribe had doors separating any of the rooms.

The Indus tribe lived in houses just like today. They where built from bricks and cement and must have been very strong because lots of these buildings are still standing today. They had a very complex city structure with one to two floors, to each building, yet there has been no evidence that the tribe had doors separating any of the rooms.

The Great Bath

The bath is made from tightly fitted bricks which had tar on the inside of the bath. The tar was used as a water proof layer so the people could bath. Archaeologists aren’t sure how they filled it up but they found a well near by.

The bath was 12 metres long and 7 metres wide. Archaeologists think, where the brick pedestals are, there use to be really tall pillars.

The Drainage System

There is  evidence of very sophisticated drainage systems in the cities of the Indus Civilisation. The drainage systems were so big that a human would have been able to walk through the middle of one. This was really helpful because if the drain was blocked, the drain could be easily accessed. They were also very clever because they used cement and clay bricks to make the drains, which always sloped downhill. There is evidence which shows lots of small footprints in the bricks. This may indicate that children helped to make the bricks.

Indus valley toys

These toy figures are made out of clay . They were for children to play with.The wood could of rotted so they might of put wood back on. The axels are replaced as well as the poles on the back of the cart.

These are ceramic sculptures of a small cart with vases and tools pulled by oxen,from Mohenjo-daro.


Physical and written evidence of dice and dominoes  have been uncovered by archaeologists studying the Ancient Indus. Also they were studying ancient China, Meso-America, Egypt, Greece and Rome. An ancient form of Ludo was played as well as an ancient form of chess, which was played in the Indus valley. A board, uncovered in the area of Mohenjo-Daro, was said to be the oldest chess board discovered in the Seals of the Indus Valley

The seals are the key which archaeologists used to realised that the Indus civilization really exists. There was two seals found in 1924 in two different ancient cities six hundred km apart which proved the two cities were linked. The seals were used for part of trade and some seals have their family names carved on.  This is a terracotta seal from Mohenjo-daro depicting a collection of animals and some script symbols. This sealing may have been used in specific rituals as a narrative token that tells the story of an important myth.

Indus valley’s jewellery

The Indus valley is rich in many metals and worthy stones such as Carnelian, gold, copper, turquoise and other metals/semi precious stones. The people of the Indus valley didn’t get the precious materials themselves, they traded with other nearby cities who had  originally mined these expensive jewels and stones . They then brought them back to their own civilization and then fashioned them into jewellery.