They developed extensive trade in gold, ivory, and salt The powerful ancient kingdoms in western Africa are divided into three major empires, namely the Ghana Empire, the Mali Empire and the Songhai Empire. These kingdoms flourished because of their strong economic trade relations with other territories. These kingdoms have immense gold mines located within their empire borders which produces most of their gold imports.
Some of the empires also taxed the gold and salt that entered their kingdom which made their empire wealthy and powerful. Furthermore, the location of these kingdoms also made an impact on how powerful and wealthy their empires are because their territories during that time were considered a major spot for trading.