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Also, the white farming community never amounted to more than 8% of the total white population and this proportion fell steadily after 1945 up to independence in 1980.Various factors encouraged the growth of the white population of Rhodesia.These operations were usually run by white managers, engineers, and foremen.The Census of found that Southern Rhodesia had a total population of 899,187, of whom 33,620 were Europeans, 1,998 were Coloured (mixed races), 1,250 Asiatics, 761,790 Bantu natives of Southern Rhodesia, and 100,529 Bantu aliens.

Major export products included tobacco, beef, sugar, cotton, and maize. Gold, asbestos, nickel, and chrome were mined by foreign-owned concerns such as Lonrho (Lonmin since 1999) and Anglo American.The white population of Zimbabwe reached a peak of about 296,000 in 1975, representing just over 8% of the population.It fell to around 120,000 in 1999 and to less than 50,000 in 2002.But many of the new immigrants were refugees from communism in Europe, others were former service personnel from British India, others came from Kenya, the Belgian Congo, Zambia, Algeria, and Mozambique.For a time, Rhodesia provided something of a haven for white people who were retreating from decolonisation elsewhere in Africa and Asia.

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