By Neil Charlesworth
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Extra resources for British Rule and the Indian Economy 1800–1914
M. Mukherjee estimates 54 that, whilst around 5 per cent of net national income was typically being saved during the late nineteenth century, only about 3 per cent was being committed to investment, the gap indicating the scale of hoarding [22: 75] . We have now, hopefully, reviewed the key factors required for an overall assessment of the foreign trade problem. It seems clear, both from modern measurements of the drain and from the scale of the treasure inflow, that the specific financial demands created by the imperial connection were not, after 1850, excessively burdensome to the Indian economy.
The problem, then, was not necess~rily the dominance of the metropolitan power as a supplier but the traditional importance of particular British exporters- notably the Lancashire cotton industry -within Indian markets, to the relative neglect even of other British industrial interests. Imports were still not without some productive impact, for Lancashire's archetypal export to India was unfinished 'grey goods', which required, at the least, dyeing and printing in India [126: 101]. However, the character of imports undoubtedly suggested the squandering of developmental opportunities, particularly in weak sectors like capital goods, electricals and chemicals, which might have been stimulated by greater imports of technology.
Mill- was also deeply rooted in official thinking. The imperial dimension, too, encouraged for many the vision of reshaping India in the European mould. Thus the social policies of the first half of the nineteenth century, fuelled by Utilitarian political ideologies , were unashamedly interventionist, abolishing sati, introducing Westem concepts of justice and property. More fundamental, all policy was tightly circumscribed by the basic 'imperial problem'; that a small number of foreigners were attempting to rule a vast, teeming Asian empire.