This thesis examines whether the performance of a mineral industry in a developing country changed after its nationalization. The criteria for
evaluating the performance of a mineral industry were set out at the beginning
of the thesis, drawing on the economic theory of the exhaustion of mineral
resources and on the considerations of how to determine efficiency that have
been at the forefront of the recent debate about the efficiency of the private
as opposed to the public sector.
The industry to be examined, the copper industry in Zambia, was then
placed in its historical and economic context.
After compiling and describing the relevant data series for the entire
period to be examined, 1960 -1981, the performance of the industry before its
nationalization in 1969 was examined. The reasons given at the time for
nationalization and for the subsequent cancellation of the management
contracts that the former private owners had been awarded were then analyzed,
and, in the light of this analysis, the post- nationalization experience of the
industry was examined.
Two important factors - the war in neighbouring Rhodesia and the collapse
of the copper market - could be expected to have affected the industry's
performance after nationalization and these were dealt with in a separate
Econometric work on production functions and cost equations produced
results that were consistent with the earlier findings that the industry's
performance did deteriorate after nationalization and especially after the
cancellation of the management contracts.