Asia: Economic Development of China and Japan by C.D. Cowan

By C.D. Cowan

First released in 2005. Routledge is an imprint of Taylor & Francis, an informa corporation.

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Example text

These latter merchants filled a position akin, perhaps, to wholesalers in the trade network. The Kiakhta trade also aided the development of Russian foreign trade in other areas. We have already mentioned that the demand for furs at Kiakhta resulted in the importation of fur from Europe and North America. At the same time, the increased demands for items of Chinese production caused the Russian re-export of Chinese goods, such as tea, sugar, silk, and other materials, to Europe. This may have been, in part, a transit trade, particularly with Prussia (where Prussian cloth was an important item on the Kiakhta market before the nineteenth century), but undoubtedly a large proportion of this trade was in Russian hands.

3 By that late date, however, Kiakhta had declined and lost its position as sole Sino-Russian emporium. Consequently, in 1895, of the total value of all imports from China to Russia by all routes, tea made up 85 per cent. 4 It can be seen from the description of the structure of the trade that the Sino-Russian trade at Kiakhta was a bilateral trade. While it came to be dominated by tea on the Chinese side, it was dominated by cloth on the Russian side and did not depend on anything resembling opium as a means of supporting the trade.

8, p. 130. 1 Between 1802 and 1830 it increased in weight of tea imported by 91 per cent and in 1825 it amounted to 87-3 per cent of the total value of Russian imports from China. 2 By 1850, tea constituted 95 per cent of the value of imports from China to Russia. This remained fairly steady through the rest of the century. 3 By that late date, however, Kiakhta had declined and lost its position as sole Sino-Russian emporium. Consequently, in 1895, of the total value of all imports from China to Russia by all routes, tea made up 85 per cent.

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