Competitiveness Strategy in Developing Countries: A Manual for Policy Analysis

By Ganeshan Wignaraja | Go to book overview

realise; as it is to learn from experience. It is important to observe that the road to productivity and competitiveness is not one-way. Developing countries should exploit the informational benefits from the existence of a plurality of institutional and organisational forms, to include clusters and (even!) SOEs (see Pitelis, 1998). Theory and history suggest there are no panaceas. Domestic CPs, privatisation and regulation should be combined in a way that aims at enhancing innovation and productivity, rather than finding an optimal state. Privatisation should be a means to an end. If not properly conceived and implemented, and in the absence of a suitable regulatory framework, its benefits could be severely compromised. Mistakes are bound to occur.


Notes
1
Industry refers in the main to manufacturing. This, however, tends to recede, given an emerging fuzziness of the boundaries between manufacturing and services.
2
Michie (1997) observes that even 'quangos' (quasi-autonomous non-governmental organisations) and 'quasi-markets', such as those created in the British National Health Service (by splitting hospitals as service providers from local authorities as purchasers of services) have contributed to additional government regulation and intervention.
3
There can be too much contestability in public sector markets, in that it can increase the dependence of politicians, bureaucrats, etc. to pressures by organised interest groups, leading to regulatory capture.
4
This is based on the author's own experience with policy making in Greece, where he has coordinated the 'Future of Greek Industry Project', a consensus-based, bottom-up industrial strategy, orchestrated by the government and supported by the major social partners, see the section 'Summary and conclusions'.
5
This need not exclude (threats to) protectionism, either, both in support of such players and as a means of ensuring fair and open trade.

References

a
Adam, C., Cavendish, W. and Mistry, P.S. (1992), Adjusting Privatisation: Case Studies from Developing Countries, James Currey, Islington, UK, Ian Randle Publishers, Kingston, Jamaica and Heinemann Educational Books, Portsmouth, NH.
Alchian, A. and Demsetz, H. (1982), 'Production, Information Costs and Economic Organization', American Economic Review, 62(5): 888-895.
Audretch, D.B. (ed.) (1998), Industrial Policy and Competitive Advantage. Volume 1: The Mandate for Industrial Policy, Edward Elgar, Cheltenham.

b
Bacon, R. and Eltis, W. (1986), Britain's Economic Problem: Too Few Producers, Macmillan, London.
Bain, J.S. (1956), Barriers to New Competition, Harvard University Press, Cambridge, MA.
Baumol, W. (1982), 'Contestable Markets: An Uprising in the Theory of Industry Structure', American Economic Review, 82:1-15.
Baumol, W. (1993), Entrepreneurship, Management and the Structure of Pay-offs, MIT Press, Cambridge, MA.
Best, M. (1990), The New Competition: Institutions for Industrial Restructuring, Polity Press, Oxford.
Best, M. and Forrant, R. (1996), 'Creating Industrial Capacity: Pentagon-Led versus Production-Led Industrial Policies', in J. Michie and John Grieve Smith (eds), Creating Industrial Capacity, Towards Full Employment, Oxford University Press, Oxford.

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