Smith’s Seven Obstacles to Agricultural Development and Ten Obstacles to Commerce

In Lectures on Jurisprudence, Adam Smith enumerated the obstacles to agriculture:

  1. Lack of cultivation by the big land owners
  2. Payment of the rent in kind
    • The farmer has less produce to pay as rent after a bad harvest, but he will have a bit more money to pay because the scarcity will increase the money price of his little harvest.
  3. Additional taxes by the government (kings)
  4. Right of Primogeniture
  5. Entails
  6. Feudal Rules in Property Transfer
  7. Banning Food Exports During Famines

 

and commerce

  1. Slave labour
  2. Oppression of merchants
    • Only the Jews were strong enough to withstand oppression, well enough to make money
  3. Imperfect law on contracts
  4. Difficulty of transportation
  5. The monopoly of fairs and markets
  6. The monopoly of staple towns
  7. Taxes on imported and exported goods
  8. The monopoly and exclusive privileges of corporations
  9. The statute of apprenticeship
  10. Some bounties which encourage one commodity and hinder another
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