increased flow of silver caused lower economic opportunities and increased
drastic changes throughout all of the places interconnected with the trade;
however, this flow also increased globalized trade because of the people’s need
for more silver.
Wang Xijue stated that the
government requires silver for payments, but fails to disburse silver to begin
with. Prior to the trade of silver, citizens
could pay with rice, wheat, chicken, or soybeans; however, with the newly
introduced silver trade, people were forced into debt as they could not pay
with silver. Xijue argues that because
of the silver requirements, soil tillers receive lower returns on their
labors. As a result, less land is put
into cultivation. This led to the Commercial Revolution throughout China, or
simply the urbanization of Chinese lands.
The Commercial Revolution was when China’s agricultural lands became of
little use, as China began to urbanize and industrialize. He Qiaoyuan stated that the economic system
of China and neighboring countries has deteriorated as an effect of the silver
trade. Chinese interaction Southeast Asia and the Indian Ocean results in the trade
of Chinese goods for SE Asia’s and Indian Ocean’s goods.
On the contrary, the flow of silver
increased world interaction through trade and contact. Tomas
de Mercado stated that neighboring countries desire silver greatly, meaning
they are willing to trade for it.
Essentially, if the other countries begin trading desirable items, other
surrounding countries will join, therefore increasing global trade. Prior to this trade, the Chinese enforced the
162 ban on foreign trade, stopping all trade with foreign countries. Because silver and other valued items were desired
among Chinese imperials, the Ming Dynasty agreed to trade with surrounding
countries. China would trade goods such
as silk, porcelain, and tea to the Europeans and would get silver in return for
the hopes of monetizing it. By having
silver as their monetary system, they would not spend much on production of
coins. Paper money, as they had before,
failed mostly because of the certain technological advancements that the Chinese
simply did not have. Likewise, Ralph
Fitch stated that the Portugese brought back luxury goods from China, but China
would in return obtain about 600,000 coins worth of silver.