Problems of entrepreneurship and petty trade have largely been ignored in planning to reform land tenure and land use in Botswana. Yet the administrative agencies regulating land use are also involved in the licensing of trade, and the need to reform the trading regulations and traditions inherited from the colonial state are no less pressing than the need for land reform. There is a pattern which is gradually coming to be recognised in other parts of Africa as well. The inherited trading regulations, often phrased or explained as intended to protect consumers, constitute a formidable barrier to the development of new forms of competition in trade. If applied strictly, and effectively, they would block the expansion of petty entrepreneurship and the entry into trade of a new category of entrepreneurs. In effect, the regulations favour the continued dominance in trade of the larger-scale traders, often aliens, who were established in their businesses before independence. Moreover, the continued dominance of the old trading establishment is somewhat masked by the apparently large increase in the number of officially registered traders. Such numbers conceal the fact that the inherited rules generate constraints which make it harder for new traders to penetrate into the highly profitable trade sectors hitherto monopolised, with few exceptions, by aliens or non-Africans. Thus in Botswana, the continued dominance of trade and commerce by Europeans and Asians since Independence has been bolstered by a series of archaic and complex licensing regulations which, in effect, eliminate any advantages petty entrepreneurs might have in competing with large-scale, established enterprises.