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Economic transitions: State and industry in Argentina and Spain, 1975-90.

Ortiz Donat, Isabel (1994) Economic transitions: State and industry in Argentina and Spain, 1975-90. PhD thesis, London School of Economics and Political Science.

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At the beginning of the 1980s, when the process of democratisation was at best fragile or incomplete in Latin America and Southern and Eastern Europe, economic crisis provoked a debate about the relationship between economic and political transitions. Various questions were posed about the compatibility of democracy and economic development, the possibility of accomplishing political reform during a period of acute economic instability and the practicalities of co-ordinating structural changes in the productive and political systems. The thesis opens with an examination of the interrelationship between the political and economic transitions. This is followed by an account of structural change in Argentina and Spain in chapters I and II. Particular attention will be paid to events of the last decade but these will be placed in the context of the historical evolution of the international economy from the 1930s to the 1990s. Thereafter, the analysis will focus on changes in the social and productive systems. Chapters III and IV describe and appraise the process of transition. Emphasis is placed on differences between Spanish and Argentine economic nationalism. In part, the distinct chronology of liberalisation manifest in the two case-studies may be attributed to the specifics of nationalism. This will be illustrated by an examination of the attempts to implement adjustment plans, to reform the state, to stabilise the financial sector, to implement tax reforms and the management of social conflicts. It will be shown that a gradualist approach is more effective than "shock therapy" and that in managing a transition from interventionism to liberalism the key question confronting the state is which sectors to protect -and how. It will also be shown that, notwithstanding policy rethoric, the process of deregulation has been patchy. Both the Argentine an Spanish governments have been highly selective in targeting sectors to be liberalised. Chapters V and VI analyze the new productive structures that emerged from de-regulation. The following topics are considered: industrial policy; programmes of industrial restructuring; new levels of integration into the international economy; the process of policy-making; relations between industry and finance; the increasing role of the tertiary and informal sectors. Throughout, contrasts and comparisons will be made between Spain and Argentina and their evolving interaction with the world economy.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Uncontrolled Keywords: Economics, General
Sets: Collections > ProQuest Etheses

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