Challenging Neoliberal Myths: A Critical
Look at the Mexican Experience
by Martin Hart-Landsberg
Representatives of the established order were unprepared for the massive
1999 demonstrations in Seattle against the World Trade Organziation (WTO)
and remain on the defensive in the face of the internationally coordinated
actions against neoliberal globalization that have followed. On an ideological
level, they have responded by seeking to undermine the legitimacy of antiglobalization
activists, especially those in the developed capitalist world, by claiming
that these activists oppose the very policies and institutions that are
in the best interest of the poor in the third world. One example: the
former head of the WTO, Mike Moore, declared that “The people that
stand outside and say they work in the interests of the poorest people...they
make me want to vomit. Because the poorest people on our planet, they
are ones that need us the most.”1
For the past two decades, neoliberal advocates defended their policies
by arguing that they were responsible for East Asia’s rapid and
sustained economic growth. They did so even though most East Asian countries
followed policies radically different from those advocated by the International
Monetary Fund (IMF) and World Bank. Then came the 1997–1998 crisis.
Almost overnight, these advocates disowned their former star performers,
blaming their economic problems on the fact that their economies were
hopelessly distorted by cronyism and in need of a good application of
neoliberalism. While this shameless about-face allowed the defenders of
neoliberal orthodoxy to avoid a critical self-evaluation, it also left
them in search of new success stories.
Mexico is the heir apparent to the former model economies of East Asia.
Although not long ago Mexico was encouraged to learn from East Asia, it
is easy to see why neoliberals now celebrate Mexico. Recent Mexican presidents
have enthusiastically embraced globalization and the Free Trade Area of
the Americas (FTAA) initiative. In addition, Mexico “enjoyed”
five successive years of growth from 1996–2000, a period when most
third world countries suffered from stagnation or outright recession.
Key to this performance has been the restructuring of the Mexican economy,
best symbolized by the establishment of a new growth core rooted in the
production and export of manufactures. For example, exports as a percentage
of GDP rose from 15 percent in 1993 to 33.5 percent in 1999, and the share
of manufactures in total exports soared from 28 percent to 85 percent
over the same period.
Mexico’s “forward” looking free-trade policies are
said to be one of the most important reasons for this successful restructuring.
Equally important, according to its supporters, has been Mexico’s
commitment to internal reform, which enabled the country to take advantage
of its new trade opportunities. In the words of Jose Angel Gurria, Mexico’s
Secretary of Finance and Public Credit:
The reforms—which have included trade and capital account
liberalization, increased private sector participation in key sectors
of the economy, tax reforms, changes in labor market structure, capital
market liberalization, and pension system reforms—have transformed
a closed, heavily regulated economy with high government intervention
into an open, market-driven economy.2
While it is true that the Mexican economy has undergone a significant
restructuring, proponents of neoliberalism have tended to be highly selective
in their representation of the Mexican experience (as has the Mexican
government). In fact, as I argue below, the result of this restructuring
has been immiserating international competitiveness, not development.
Moreover, even this gain appears endangered. The 2001 U.S. recession brought
Mexican growth to a halt, and foreign investors have begun moving production
to lower cost locations in Asia. Thus, correctly understood, the Mexican
experience actually undermines the mainstream defense of neoliberal globalization.
The Rise and Fall of State-Directed Industrialization
Mexico’s recent embrace of neoliberalism ended a fifty-year experience
with state-directed industrialization dating back to the 1930s. Responding
to decades of foreign domination and peasant uprisings, President Lazaro
Cardenas (1934–1940) promoted land reform, nationalized key foreign
assets (most importantly the railway system and the petroleum sector),
and used state resources to encourage private investment in an effort
to secure Mexico’s independence and modernization.
The economic role of the state continued to expand during the 1940s and
1950s.3 The Second World War and the Korean
War boosted the demand for Mexico’s agricultural and mining products
and the state used its new earnings to advance a wide-ranging import-substitution-industrialization
strategy. However, the end of the Korean War brought lower commodity prices
and rates of growth. The economy floundered for the rest of the decade,
falling into outright recession in 1958–1959.
The next twelve years (from 1959 to 1970) represented the high point
in Mexico’s industrial experience. This resurgence was led by a
reinvigorated state effort to promote manufacturing. Using borrowed money
(largely from foreign sources), the state subsidized loans; it provided
the private sector with below cost, state produced industrial inputs (including
petroleum, lumber and mining products, electricity, transportation, cement,
and steel) and established new parastatal firms producing products such
as auto parts and machine tools. It also protected the new manufacturing
activity with high tariffs.
Despite its many accomplishments, the state’s postwar economic
strategy was not sustainable. Because the state had sought to promote
modernization in alliance with the Mexican business elite and within terms
acceptable to U.S. political leaders, it refrained from taking actions
that limited private sector profitability. As a result, it never developed
a secure and stable source of revenue to fund its activities. More critically,
it never developed a strategy to deal with the country’s worsening
balance of payments situation.
Industrial production was increasingly directed towards the protected
domestic market. Moreover, it remained heavily dependent on foreign technology
and inputs. At the same time, the largely ignored agricultural sector
was unable to generate the foreign exchange needed to cover the growing
imports of consumer durables and capital goods.
The Mexican economic miracle finally came to an end in the 1970s. Balance
of payments problems forced the government to recess the economy in 1971–1972,
and then again in 1975–1976. But, hoping to overcome structural
weaknesses and restore past growth rates, the state continued to expand
its activities, including the number of parastatal firms.
Despite their previous gains from state activity, business leaders had
grown uneasy about the steady growth of state power, seeing it as a potential
threat to their independence. They also feared the growing labor movement
that had gained strength from the long expansion. By the mid-1970s, their
unease with state policy turned into opposition. They wanted the state
to reduce its direct role in the economy as well as maintain slower growth
in order to weaken labor activism. Angered by the state’s refusal,
they “deserted” the economy. Capital flight intensified over
the decade, but the government took no steps to stop it.
A rapid rise in oil prices beginning in the late 1970s allowed the state
to temporarily sustain its strategy, and underwrite a new period of growth
that lasted from 1978 to 1981. However, U.S. government attempts to stabilize
the dollar pushed up world interest rates and triggered a global economic
slowdown. The combination threw Mexico into an even more serious balance
of payments crisis. In February 1982, the government was forced to devalue
the peso by 78 percent. In August, it was forced to declare a temporary
suspension of debt payments and ask the U.S. government for emergency
assistance. It then devalued the peso again, this time by 60 percent.
Perhaps the last straw for Mexico’s business leaders came on September
1, 1982. President Lopez Portillo, in his final speech to the nation,
announced the nationalization of Mexico’s banks in an effort to
control capital flight. The fact that the state was willing and able to
pursue stabilization at the expense of private property rights intensified
business determination to pursue a new economic strategy based on neoliberal
The U.S. government, taking advantage of Mexico’s request for financial
assistance, demanded that the Mexican government reduce its spending,
privatize state firms, and open domestic markets to foreign trade and
investment. And for reasons noted above, the Mexican elite supported the
demand. Having run out of room to maneuver, the state agreed to comply.
Thus, it was both internal and external dynamics that led the government
to break with the past and adopt a new economic strategy.
The Neoliberal Transformation
The government’s first step in the process of neoliberalization
was to slash public spending, which pushed the economy into recession
in 1982, 1983, and 1986. The economic contraction succeeded in generating
the large trade surpluses needed to make debt payments.
Next the government launched a major privatization program. In 1984,
the state controlled 1,212 firms and entities. By December 1988, the number
had been reduced to 448.
In the middle of the decade the government began dropping trade restrictions
in order to cheapen imported inputs and promote export-oriented growth.
It also joined the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT). As tariffs
were reduced and import licenses were eliminated, many manufacturing firms
(especially domestically oriented ones) were driven into bankruptcy.
In 1989, still in need of foreign exchange and hoping to finalize yet
another U.S-led financial bailout, the government initiated a sweeping
liberalization of its foreign investment regulations. It revoked measures
that had blocked majority foreign ownership and opened areas that had
previously been off-limits to foreign investors.
Finally, in 1990, Mexican President Carlos Salinas sought and won U.S.
President George Bush’s support for an agreement to promote Mexican-U.S.
economic integration. The result was the North American Free Trade Agreement
(NAFTA). Both U.S. and Mexican business leaders celebrated NAFTA for much
the same reason: they saw it “locking in” the neoliberal policy
transformation of the previous decade.
Mexican workers paid a heavy price for their government’s embrace
of neoliberalism. Real wages fell by approximately 30 percent over the
decade of the 1980s. The same cannot be said of Mexico’s elite who
enjoyed many opportunities to benefit from the new policies. Thanks to
Mexico’s currency devaluations, they were able to make a financial
killing by repatriating their funds. They also benefited from the government’s
privatization program, in which state firms were offered to them at attractive
The Neoliberal Era
Given the extent of Mexico’s neoliberal economic transformation,
it is easy to see why neoliberal advocates were quick to take credit for
the country’s growth over the years 1989 to 1994. In point of fact,
this growth was largely fueled by a massive inflow of money from outside
the country and came to a sudden halt when the process reversed.
Between 1990 and 1993, approximately $91 billion flowed into Mexico,
a total equal to almost one fifth of all net inflows to developing countries.
Significantly, even with this massive inflow, the country’s growth
began slowing in 1992. Ominously, trade and current account deficits ballooned
despite the slowdown in economic activity. The trade deficit rose from
$0.9 billion in 1990 to $18.5 billion in 1994. The current account deficit
grew from 2.8 percent of GDP to 7 percent over the same period. The rapid
growth in, and size of, these deficits is largely explained by the destructive
impact of the past decade’s neoliberal policies on Mexico’s
national economic base.
Mainstream economists largely dismissed concerns about Mexico’s
increasing dependence on foreign funds, but they were wrong to do so.
In response to a rise in U.S. interest rates and Mexican political instability
(which was intensified by the Zapatista struggle), foreign investors began
pulling their money out of the country in early 1994. The Mexican government
tried to stem the outflow by selling dollar denominated bonds and raising
interest rates, but its efforts were unsuccessful. Nearly out of reserves,
the government was forced to let the peso float in late December. Its
rapid fall only intensified the ongoing capital flight. The economy collapsed
in 1995: GDP fell by 6.2 percent and wages fell by 25 percent.
This collapse had a major impact on the ownership and productive structure
of the Mexican economy. Mexican businesses had borrowed heavily to purchase
newly privatized banks, mines, the telephone company, and other enterprises.
But with interest rates rising to more than 100 percent in early 1995,
many companies found it impossible to survive. Most reluctantly sold off
large shares of their operations to eager foreign buyers. The devaluation
and low wages, in concert with NAFTA, also encouraged many foreign firms,
especially from the United States, to undertake new export-oriented investments.
Altogether, foreign direct investment in Mexico exploded from a level
of approximately $2–3 billion a year in the 1980s to an average
of almost $11 billion a year from 1994 to 1999. As a result, not only
did the economy become more export oriented, it also became increasingly
dominated by U.S. foreign capital. The percentage of exports produced
by multinationals rose from 56.5 in 1993 to 64.2 in 1998, and the percentage
of exports sold to the U.S. rose from 79.3 to 88.2 over the same period.
It is this “new,” export oriented, multinational dominated
economy, and its post-1995 growth record, that mainstream economists celebrate
when they argue for the superiority of neoliberal globalization. However,
a more critical examination of the Mexican experience highlights the fact
that this new regime has generated few benefits for working people in
Trends in manufacturing value added provide one indicator of this sad
reality. Despite Mexico’s rapid growth in the production of manufactured
exports, the country’s manufacturing value added has remained generally
unchanged over the decade of the 1990s. The reason is that the government’s
neoliberal policies have largely hollowed out the country’s domestic
industrial base and the new exports are heavily and increasingly dependent
on manufactured imports.
Labor market trends highlight the human costs of this outcome. From 1991–1998,
the percentage of urban workers employed for wages fell from 73.9 to 61.2.
Over the same period, the percentage of unpaid workers rose from 4.6 to
12, and the percentage of self-employed increased from 16.6 to 22.8. Moreover,
over the same period, wage workers and self-employed workers suffered
massive declines in average hourly income, 26.6 percent and 49.6 percent
respectively. While wages did rise in 1999 and 2000, average earnings
still remained below 1994 levels. And, because of Mexico’s recession,
these wages once again began falling in 2001.
The Mexican Experience Revisited
The best way to understand why Mexico’s working people have not
benefited from their country’s recent growth is to study the operation
of the country’s most dynamic exporters. These include the maquiladoras,
foreign export platforms, and large private national exporters.
Maquiladoras: Maquiladoras are registered foreign-owned manufacturing
firms (most of which operate along the U.S.-Mexican border) that are allowed
to import inputs duty free because they export their entire output. In
line with Mexico’s changing economic strategy, maquiladoras became
increasingly central to the Mexican economy. Their exports grew by 17–20
percent a year from 1990 to 1997, with their share of total exports rising
from 33.1 percent to 40.9 percent. Their share of total foreign direct
investment rose from 6 percent in 1994 to 26 percent in 1999. By 2000,
they were producing 47 percent of all exports and 54 percent of all manufactured
This increase in economic activity was accompanied by a rapid increase
in maquiladora employment, from 420,000 in 1990 to 1.3 million in 2000.
This growth has taken place in the context of an overall decline in non-maquiladora
manufacturing employment. Reflecting the austerity and market openings
of the 1980s and mid-1990s, non-maquiladora manufacturing employment fell
from 2.6 million in 1981 to 2.2 million in 1997.
While the maquiladoras have been celebrated by mainstream economists
for anchoring Mexico’s economic transformation, Mexican workers
have not benefited from the accompanying shift away from non-maquiladora
production. Maquiladora workers receive wages considerably below those
paid to non-maquiladora manufacturing workers. In 1994, average maquiladora
wages were only 47 percent of non-maquiladora manufacturing wages. While
the gap narrowed over the remainder of the decade, closing to approximately
80 percent, this trend did not represent an improvement for maquiladora
workers. Rather, it was caused by non-maquiladora manufacturing wages
falling at a faster rate than maquila wages.
Maquiladora working conditions also remain poor. Turnover rates average
between 15 percent and 25 percent of the labor force per month. The average
work-life of a maquila worker is only ten years because of injuries, health
problems, and the firing of women workers who become pregnant.
The problems with the maquiladora-based development process extend beyond
wages and working conditions. As the New York Times explained:
All along the border, the land, the water, and the air are thick
with industrial and human waste. The National Water Commission reports
that the towns and cities, strapped for funds, can adequately treat less
than 35 percent of the sewage generated daily. About 12 percent of the
people living on the border have no reliable access to clean water. Nearly
a third live in homes that are not connected to sewage systems. Only about
half the streets are paved.4
Moreover, the maquiladoras continue to function as an enclave with few
connections to the broader Mexican economy. Over 97 percent of their nonlabor
inputs are imported from outside Mexico.
Foreign Export Platforms: Many foreign producers of manufactured
exports did not go through the legal procedures required to register as
maquiladoras. In most cases, their original investments were oriented
towards the domestic market and/or their operations made significant use
of local inputs. However, as a result of NAFTA and declines in the peso
and Mexican wages, they have found it profitable to convert their operations
into export platforms. While these foreign owned export platforms trail
the maquiladoras in overall dollar value of exports, their share of total
exports rose from 19 percent in 1993 to 26 percent in 1996.
Five foreign auto producers (GM, Ford, VW, Daimler-Chrysler, and Nissan)
dominate this group. By the mid-1990s, they accounted for some 80 percent
of foreign platform exports. In fact, the Mexican subsidiaries of GM,
Ford, VW, and Daimler-Chrysler are the leading export companies in the
There are those who argue that the growth of the auto sector represents
the leading edge of Mexico’s transformation into a high-value-added
producer of internationally competitive products. Some of the auto plants
established in Mexico are indeed state of the art. However there is little
evidence that these plants have made any significant contribution to worker
well-being or the industrial upgrading of the Mexican economy.
Despite the fact the many of these modern auto plants have productivity
levels comparable with those in the United States or Japan, Mexican workers
receive wages far below their American and Japanese counterparts. In 1994,
for example, General Motors paid its U.S. workers $19 an hour and its
Mexican workers $1.54. Moreover, while productivity in the Mexican auto
sector rose by 10.3 percent from 1994 to 1999, auto sector wages fell
by 20 percent.
Although low wages led to numerous strike actions, corporations have
resisted any improvements. In fact, according to a senior level manager
at a U.S.-owned Mexican assembly and stamping plant, “It is the
policy [of the parent company] and I guess of most every other company
that does multinational business, to pay only at the prevailing wage of
the area that they are in.”5 This
statement is especially revealing since most state of the art plants were
deliberately located in agricultural areas where wages were low.
Broader technological gains have also been limited. For example, the
United Nations Economic Commission on Latin America and the Caribbean
reports that the “Mexican automotive industry is focused essentially
on the North American market, is dominated by foreign companies and has
limited national linkages”6
National Exporters: A number of Mexican-owned manufacturing firms,
primarily the largest, have also become increasingly export oriented.
And, like the foreign export platforms, their export orientation was largely
motivated by Mexico’s post-1994 peso and wage collapse. Thus, the
top thirty-four exporters increased their foreign-to-total sales ratio
from an average of 12 percent over the years 1990–1994 to an average
of 24.7 percent over the years 1995–1997.
Mexico’s dominant national exporters have also established few
linkages with other domestic firms. According to one scholar:
It is true that the major Mexican private exporters are still
in the process of productive restructuring and have not yet reached a
level of exports sufficient to offset the avalanche of imports that came
with the economic opening. It is nevertheless troubling that the more
than 13 years of decrees and programs designed to stimulate exports have
not produced productive-export linkages sufficient to integrate many smaller
firms into the new conditions of national and international competition.7
And, as these firms consolidate their export orientation and relationships
with foreign producers, they are becoming increasingly hostile to national
initiatives designed to boost the health of the broader national economy,
Export production by the maquiladoras, foreign export platforms and large
national exporters has brought few if any benefits to Mexican workers
because, as noted above, their operations have been promoted and sustained
at the expense of the broader national economy. Even the World Bank has
been forced to acknowledge that the Mexican growth strategy has produced
a divided and disarticulated economy:
The productive sector continues to be characterized by a dual
structure that seems to have become increasingly differentiated in the
wake of trade liberalization and the banking crisis of the 1990s. On the
one side is a dynamic export sector made up of internationally competitive
firms, including the maquiladoras, and on the other is a less efficient
domestic-market-oriented sector dominated by microenterprises and small-
and medium-scale firms.8
This outcome has been actively encouraged by government policy. First,
the government has done little to force or encourage exporters to create
“productive linkages” with domestic firms. This is not accidental;
Mexican policy makers seek to attract foreign export producers by giving
them maximum freedom to organize production as they see fit.
Second, the low wages paid to export workers, especially by the maquiladoras,
continues to undermine domestic purchasing power and ensure that domestically
oriented producers face limited markets. Again, these low wages are not
an unintended consequence of government policy; the government has pursued
a low wage policy precisely to ensure the profitability and expansion
of the export sector.
Third, the collapse of the Mexican banking system has effectively limited
the ability of domestically oriented producers, especially small and medium
sized ones, to obtain needed funds for investment. The re-privatization
of Mexico’s banks in 1991–1992 left the system under the control
of leading Mexican business groups who engaged in a reckless funding of
highly speculative and unstable activities. The 1994–1995 crisis
brought an end to this activity, but left the Mexican banking system with
a number of serious problems, including a “bad loan” portfolio
equal to approximately 20 percent of the country’s GDP. The result,
according to the World Bank, is that,
bank lending to the private sector has fallen since 1994 by
about 40 percent in real terms, consumer credit by private banks all but
disappeared...and the productive private sector itself became bifurcated
between large, export-oriented corporations that can access foreign finance,
and cash-constrained relatively smaller firms catering to the domestic
Foreign capital was quick to take advantage of Mexico’s banking
crisis. With the Mexican government’s encouragement, foreign investors
began taking over Mexico’s main banks. By mid-2001, foreign-owned
banks controlled more than 70 percent of the assets in Mexico’s
banking system. It is highly doubtful that this foreign takeover will
lead to new lending policies promoting the interests of domestically oriented
Finally, even if one were willing to overlook the high cost and imbalances
associated with Mexico’s export strategy, there is reason to question
whether it can be sustained. As a result of the U.S. downturn, the Mexican
economy contracted by 1.4 percent in 2001. Maquiladora production fell
by 9.2 percent and maquila employment declined by some 20 percent. These
declines have been widespread; even high-tech border production has suffered.
More importantly, many business analysts predict that Mexico’s
maquiladora sector will not regain its past dynamism even when the American
economy recovers. According to Business Week, although Mexican
wages “fell sharply in the age of the 1994 peso devaluation, wages
in Mexico have been rising faster than inflation for the past two years.
And since the peso has strengthened almost 5% against the dollar since
January , Mexico-based exporters are seeing local production costs
Growing numbers of these exporters have responded to this situation by
shifting their production to Asia, and especially China. As The Economist
explains, “While the average labor cost for assembly
plants in Mexico is now around $2 an hour, China’s figure is 22
cents. Although plants in Mexico are more sophisticated, the country has
failed to develop a network of local suppliers that would make it hard
for manufacturers to leave as the Chinese catch up.”11
So, even though Mexican wages still remain below their 1994 level, businesses
in Mexico see the recent wage increase as unacceptable because there are
other countries where workers will work for lower wages. This is a no-win
situation for workers in Mexico as well as in Asia. It also makes crystal
clear that neoliberalism is much more an ideological cover for a competitive
race to the bottom than it is an economic approach capable of advancing
a process of human development.
Alternatives to Neoliberalism
Progressive economists in Mexico are well aware that neoliberalism has
been a disaster for Mexico. However for many, their rejection of neoliberalism
has not been extended to a rejection of capitalism. In other words, they
believe that there are capitalist alternatives to neoliberalism that are
capable of promoting Mexican development.
To a large extent, such thinking represents a continuing belief in the
legacy of the Mexican revolution and the 1930s Cardenas government. This
belief in the viability of state-directed capitalist development has been
sustained, despite its failure in Mexico, in large part because of the
past successes of East Asian countries, especially South Korea and Taiwan.
For example, Alejandro Nadal, the director of the Science, Technology,
and Development Program at El Colegio de Mexico notes that:
Mexico has adopted policies that do not guarantee increasing
competitiveness through a stronger technological base. Rapidly and indiscriminately
liberalizing trade, running balanced budgets that restrict investment
in education and R&D, privatizing strategic industries (such as petrochemicals),
and getting rid of policy instruments such as the use of the federal government’s
purchasing power and performance requirements which build backward and
forward linkages does not appear to be the best strategy to develop a
healthy competitive base. The experience of countries like Taiwan and
the Republic of Korea is almost 100 percent counter to this set of policies.
Or to put it in other terms, Mexico is following exactly the opposite
strategy these countries implemented in the last 40 years.12
While this criticism of Mexico’s past economic policies is sound,
the implied conclusion that Mexico could achieve development by adopting
the South Korean or Taiwanese state-directed growth strategy is seriously
flawed.13 First, one cannot simply replicate
another country’s experience. State power in South Korea and Taiwan
came out of a complex history, not a set of agreed upon policies.
Second, East Asian growth came at high expense in terms of civil liberties,
human and workplace rights, and the environment. The East Asian experience,
while demonstrating that neoliberalism has little to offer third world
countries, should not be romanticized; it offers no models.
Third, the East Asian strategy is itself in crisis. This strategy worked
well when states dominated their respective national political economies,
there were few international competitors, and U.S. and Japanese government
policies were supportive. Eventually labor resistance, regional overproduction,
and a change in U.S. and Japanese policies undermined it, leading to the
crisis of 1997–1998.
Taking advantage of this crisis, the U.S. government, with the assistance
of the IMF and in some cases East Asian capitalists, has been increasingly
successful in weakening the power of East Asian states and forcing open
East Asian markets to foreign trade and investment. Ironically, in light
of the true nature of the Mexican experience, this process is defended
by mainstream economists who argue that since neoliberal policies benefited
Mexican workers, they can also be expected to benefit East Asian workers.
As the Bush administration seeks to win popular support for the Free
Trade Area of the Americas and new WTO initiatives, we can expect to hear
more about the Mexican “success” story (or perhaps that of
some other newly chosen “miracle” country if conditions get
bad enough in Mexico). One way to blunt this offensive is to help people
see through the distortions and lies surrounding such claims.
At the same time, we must also help people see that the answer to contemporary
development problems is not the revitalization of the state-directed growth
strategies of the past. These strategies, whether in Mexico or East Asia,
suffered from their own serious contradictions that helped pave the way
for current globalization dynamics. The major obstacle to development
is capitalism itself, and our efforts must be directed towards advancing
new visions of democratic and sustainable development.
- Andrea Hopkins, “WTO Chief: Seattle Protestors Make Me Sick,”
Independent/UK, February 6, 2001.
- Jose Angel Gurria, “Mexico: Recent Developments, Structural
Reforms and Future Challenges,” Finance and Development
37, No. 1 (March 2000), 24.
- For a more complete history of Mexican development policy see James
M. Cypher, State and Capital in Mexico, Development Policy Since
1940, (Boulder Colorado: Westview Press, 1990).
- Ginger Thompson, “Chasing Mexico’s Dream into Squalor,”
New York Times, February 11, 2001.
- Harley Shaiken, “Advanced Manufacturing and Mexico: A New International
Division of Labor?,” Latin American Research Review 29,
No. 2 (1994), 58.
- Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean, Statistical
Yearbook for Latin America and the Caribbean 1999 (Chile: United
Nations, 2000), 110.
- Jorge Basave Kunhardt, “Accomplishments and Limitations of the
Mexican Export Project,” translated by Enrique C. Ochoa, Latin
American Perspectives 28, No. 3 (May 2001), 43.
- Richard Clifford, “Growth and Competitiveness” in Mexico:
A Comprehensive Development Agenda for the New Era, Marcelo M. Giugale,
Oliver Lafourcade, and Vinh H. Nguyen, editors,(Washington D.C.: The
World Bank, 2001), 67.
- Marcelo M. Giugale, “A Comprehensive Development Agenda for
the New Era,” in Ibid., 9.
- Geri Smith, “Is the Magic Starting to Fade?,” Business
Week, August 6, 2001, 42.
- The Economist, “Mexico’s Border Region: Opportunity
Lost, February 16. 2002, 36.
- James M. Cypher, “Developing Disarticulation Within the Mexican
Economy,” Latin American Perspectives 28, No. 3 (May 2001),
- For a more complete discussion of the East Asian experience, see Martin
Hart-Landsberg, Rush to Development: Economic Change and Political
Struggle in South Korea (New York: Monthly Review Press, 1993),
and Paul Burkett and Martin Hart-Landsberg, Development, Crisis,
and Class Struggle: Learning from Japan and East Asia (New York:
St. Martin’s Press, 2000).
MARTIN HART-LANDSBERG teaches economics
at Lewis and Clark college in Portland, Oregon. He is the coauthor, with
Paul Burkett, of Development, Crisis, and Class Struggle: Learning
from Japan and East Asia (New York: St. Martin’s