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La política económica neoclásica en América Latina: génesis y consecuencias de cuatro décadas perdidas en el desarrollo latinoamericano, 1980-2020

Sánchez-Masi, Luis (2022): La política económica neoclásica en América Latina: génesis y consecuencias de cuatro décadas perdidas en el desarrollo latinoamericano, 1980-2020. Published in: Desafíos: Economía Y Empresa No. 1 (1 July 2022): pp. 17-40.

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Abstract

The aim of this article is to examine the effectiveness of economic policies based on neoclassical principles which have been implemented in most of Latin American countries since the eighties. Since then, the region has been losing relative importance in the world. The lag in the last “four lost decades” es quite general and compelling. Rather than eliminating the asymmetric relationship between developed and underdeveloped countries, the historical evidence suggests it is perpetuated by the neoclassical economic policy. In Latin America the neoclassical principles such as free market and international free trade have tended to preserve the same productive structure, thus promoting an erratic development, which depends on the demand and prices of primary products. Until now, no underdeveloped country has reached the first world by applying economic policies based on neoclassical principles. The Asian countries which performed that transition applied policies and strategies opposed to neoclassical principles. Raul Prebisch’s analyses about the inconsistency of neoclassical economic policy with Latin American reality are today as valid as seven decades ago. However, for the great majority of Latin American economists is simply inconceivable that basic principles of neoclassical theory may produce adverse effects on underdeveloped countries. Latin America must rethink the economic policy and strategy for attaining its development.

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