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AEC 2010 - Structural Transformation of Economies: Lessons from the South


Within the developing world, governments and state institutions are formulating and implementing policies to assist with overcoming the challenges which hinder the successful economic and social development of these nations. South Africa is a good example for this process, as it has been, and still is, undergoing the processes of transformation which resulted from calls from international organizations to abolish the laws of apartheid. This led to the implementation of numerous structural adjustment programmes which required the complete overhaul of the economy, changing its nature and characteristics from one in which wealth was concentrated among a few and economic diversification practically non-existent, to one in which the state plays a direct role in the achievement of economic growth and social development, and the resulting benefits spread to all. South African decision-makers have, since 1994, made numerous attempts to deal with the ongoing injustices inherited from the years of segregation and oppression, but these have resulted in a mixed bag of successes. This paper aims to analyze these policy measures, examining the realism of the stated objectives, assessing the resulting outcomes and identifying the shortcomings within them. Furthermore, the state cannot achieve all its goals unaided, and Development Finance Institutions (DFIs) are seen as an integral constituent to help achieve success in these programmes, most notably for their ability to forge ahead, achieving both efficiency and effectiveness in times of crisis.

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