The trans-Atlantic trade involved Europe, Africa and the Americas thus earning it the name Triangular trade.
It was also called the trans-Atlantic slave trade because it involved crossing the Atlantic and the main commodity was slaves.
The trade was fueled by the technological innovations especially in Spain and Portugal which facilitated sea transport.
The trade happened at a time when the Europeans were keen on expanding overseas (15th and 16th c AD)
The triangular trade was a prominent feature of the trans-Atlantic trade. It involved three main legs: Europe to Africa, Africa to the Americas, and the Americas back to Europe. European traders brought manufactured goods, such as textiles, firearms, and tools, to Africa, where they were exchanged for enslaved Africans. The enslaved Africans were then transported across the Atlantic to the Americas, primarily to work on plantations producing commodities like sugar, tobacco, and cotton. The goods produced in the Americas, known as plantation crops, were shipped back to Europe.
The trans-Atlantic trade had a profound impact on the economies, societies, and cultures of the regions involved. It led to the exploitation of African resources and the forced migration of millions of Africans to the Americas. The trade also fueled the growth of European economies and contributed to the development of global capitalism. However, it also resulted in the suffering, oppression, and loss of lives for enslaved Africans and had long-lasting effects on racial dynamics and inequalities in the Americas.
It’s important to note that while trans-Atlantic trade historically referred to the era of European colonization, today it can also encompass modern trade and economic relations between countries on both sides of the Atlantic Ocean.