The Economic Survey 2017-18 Prabhat Patnaik

Like the person on the proverbial tiger, the Indian economy is currently riding a precarious course. The Government of India’s Economic Survey for 2017-18 recognizes this frankly, but its panacea is to keep one’s fingers crossed and hope that the ride continues. The macroeconomic data it presents are closer to those of the IMF’s World Economic Outlook Update prepared for the Davos meet than to the figures of the Indian government’s own Central Statistical Office. Its GDP growth estimate for the current fiscal year is 6.75 percent (compared to the IMF’s 6.7 percent and the CSO’s 6.5); and in the absence of anything untoward,…

The Neoliberal Counter-revolution in Retreat? Jomo Kwame Sundaram

The US Wall Street crash of 1929 was followed by the Great Depression, which in turn engendered two important policy responses in 1933 with lasting consequences for generations to come: President Franklin Roosevelt's New Deal and the Glass-Steagall Act. While massive spending following American entry into the Second World War was clearly decisive in ending the Depression and for the wartime boom, the New Deal clearly showed the way forward and would have succeeded if more public money had been deployed consistently to revive economic growth. Although Michal Kalecki and others had anticipated some of his work, it took a…

Goliath’s Nasty Ways: Chevron and the people of the Amazon Jayati Ghosh

The big multinational oil companies usually do an impressive Public Relations job. Advertisements and some laudatory media reports show how "green" and people-minded these companies are, how their technicians and professional employees are concerned with the rights of local communities and with bringing access to safe clean energy to everyone. The oil major Chevron is no exception to this. Its website declares that "The foundation of our business success and world-class performance is operational excellence, which we define as the systematic management of process safety, personal safety and health, environment, reliability, and efficiency. Safety is our highest priority." Further, Chevron…

Industrial Policy: A missing link in Mexico’s quest for export-led growth Juan Carlos Moreno-Brid

This article explores the need for Mexico to adopt an active industrial policy as a key instrument to assist in the nation’s so far failed quest for high and sustained growth. Industrial_Policy (Download the full text in PDF format) (This article was originally published in the Latin American Policy—Volume 4, Number 2—Pages 216–237.)

The Sen-Bhagwati “Debate” on Economic Policy in India Jayati Ghosh

Several things are quite remarkable about the recent debate between Professor Amartya Sen and Professor Jagdish Bhagwati. The first surprise is that such a debate could become a major news item at all, making headlines and filling screen time on news channels, when it is about economic strategies that are normally discussed only in relatively small academic and policy circles. In this case, the media has tended to make it into a gladiator fight between two celebrity economists, and in the process reduced both arguments to relatively simplistic positions. The second surprise is the low level of the attacks on…

Labour Market Regulations and Economic Outcomes: Some capital lessons and minor messages Praveen Jha, Sakti Golder and Swayamsiddha Panda

This paper provides a survey of the empirical evidence on the relationship between labour market institutions and economic outcomes. Survey of major cross-country empirical constructs that examine linkages between labour regulations and different aspects of economic performance such as employment, growth, etc., shows that the empirical basis for the advocacy of blanket labour market flexibility is rather weak. The paper also highlights some key empirical findings from the organised manufacturing sector in India and postulates some capital lessons and minor messages that emerge from such an exercise. Labour_Market (Download the full text in PDF format)

Macroeconomic Impacts of Commodity Price Volatility: G20 report Aldo Caliari

The G20 has recently come up with a report on the macroeconomic impacts of excessive commodity price volatility on growth. This study has concluded that excessive volatility creates uncertainty over future price levels, and complicates long-term planning and investment which leads to producers and consumers of commodities underinvesting in physical assets that support growth. This commentary highlights the key features and important findings of this report. G20_Report (Download the full text in PDF format)