Liberalization in the Developing World: Institutional and Economic Changes in Latin America, Africa, and Asia

Liberalization in the Developing World: Institutional and Economic Changes in Latin America, Africa, and Asia

Liberalization in the Developing World: Institutional and Economic Changes in Latin America, Africa, and Asia

Liberalization in the Developing World: Institutional and Economic Changes in Latin America, Africa, and Asia

Synopsis

This book compares the success of liberalisation strategies in Asia, Africa and Latin America over the past decade. Three models emerge, which reflect the degree of state intervention in the economy and the success of liberalisation policies developed.

Excerpt

They believed their words. Everybody shows a respectful deference to certain sounds that he and his fellows can make. But about feelings people really know nothing. We talk with indignation or enthusiasm; we talk about oppression, cruelty, crime, devotion, self-sacrifice, virtue, and we know nothing real beyond the words. Nobody knows what suffering or sacrifice mean—except, perhaps, the victims of the mysterious purpose of these illusions.

Joseph Conrad, (1974) Tales of Unrest, New York: Gordon Press

In recent years the conceptualization of internationalization and liberalization has provoked a heated debate on major shifts in the fortune of nations and the development strategies adopted by the developing countries. After having for several decades opted for import-substituting industrialization policy, practically all developing countries adhered to neoliberal reforms and opened up their economies to foreign competition in order to enhance competitiveness and acquire comparative advantages. Not all of them succeeded in gaining economic strength, but, as the several cases of the emerging economies in Asia and Latin America show, neoliberal reforms in combination with export-led industrialization drives led the way for self-sustained growth.

The theory presented in this book attempts to capture the full complexity of the ongoing economic transformation of the Third World economies. the cases presented in this book seek to integrate the many elements that influence how governments and political regimes try to increase their wealth by gaining competitive advantages. in turn this allows them to increase their share in world trade and permits them to finance their development out of their rising import earnings.

Our theory draws on and spans several fields. At its core is the theory of competitive advantage and technological innovation. But given the extremely diverse countries studied in this book, it would be hazardous to develop a comprehensive theory of competitive advantage of nations. Not all nations compete with each other and many of them remain in a depen-

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