Q. 224.2( 6 Votes )
The port of Surat declined by the end of the eighteenth century on account of the growing power of European companies in trade with India. The port of Surat was an important pre-colonial port. It connected India to the Gulf and Red Sea ports. A vibrant sea trade was operated through this port. A variety of Indian merchants and bankers were involved in this network of export trade. But by the 1750s this network, controlled by Indian merchants, was breaking down. The Europeans secured many concessions from local courts as well as the monopoly rights to trade. European colonies developed the Bombay port in the later half of the 18th century. This led to a decline of the old ports of Surat and Hoogly from where local merchants had operated. Exports slowed and local banks here went bankrupt. The European companies gradually gained power. This resulted in decrease of the activities on Surat Port. Consequently, sea trade from Surat declined.
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