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Contribution to Book
The Resilience of Comprador Capitalism: “New” Economic Groups in Southern Africa
Big Business and Economic Development: Conglomerates and Economic Groups in Developing Countries and Transition Economies Under Globalization (2007)
  • Stefan Andreasson, Queen's University - Belfast
Abstract

This chapter examines the emergence of new economic groups in South Africa and Zimbabwe in the context of “paternalistic trusteeship” by governments themselves or by old economic groups managing to retain economic and political influence and aiming to forge stable and mutually profitable relations with new economic elites. New economic actors emerge when political and economic liberalization increases “points of entry” to economic (and political) activity for those previously marginalized or barred from entry. A key point of contention in the debate on the aims and roles of these groups is whether old, entrenched economic groups are simply in the business of “grooming” a new comprador class to serve (or at least not actively oppose) their interests, or if they are indeed making an effort to facilitate empowerment by engaging with and supporting the new economic groups emerging as a result of political and economic liberalization.

Taken together, experiences in these two countries provide a nuanced picture of the opportunities and difficulties governments face when attempting to manage oftentimes cross-cutting pressures from businesses and civil society. The two “case studies” examine interactions between key economic and political actors in each country and their preferences with regard to policies governing economic and sociopolitical transformation. Both economic groups and governments have inevitably become transformed (in terms of policy preferences and strategies) by the many changes sweeping across the region in recent decades.

Keywords
  • comprador capitalism,
  • liberalization,
  • South Africa,
  • Zimbabwe
Disciplines
Publication Date
2007
Editor
Alex E. Fernández Jilberto and Barbara Hogenboom
Publisher
Routledge
Series
Routledge Studies in International Business and the World Economy
ISBN
978-0-415-41268
Citation Information
Stefan Andreasson. "The Resilience of Comprador Capitalism: “New” Economic Groups in Southern Africa" Abingdon and New YorkBig Business and Economic Development: Conglomerates and Economic Groups in Developing Countries and Transition Economies Under Globalization (2007)
Available at: http://works.bepress.com/stefan_andreasson/10/