What role did the American colonies play for Spain and Portugal?

The basis of the colonial system in the Spanish and Portuguese possessions in the New World was the seizure of land and the feudal exploitation of the Indian population, which was completely dependent on European secular and spiritual feudal lords. For three centuries of Spanish domination (XVI-XVIII centuries) from America, gold and silver were exported for a total of 28 billion francs. The export of these precious metals, obtained through the ruthless exploitation of the indigenous Indian population, made both countries the leading powers of the late Middle Ages.

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