S-Space College of Humanities (인문대학) Institute of Latin American Studies (라틴아메리카연구소) Revista Iberoamericana (이베로아메리카연구) Revista Iberoamericana (이베로아메리카연구) vol.02 (1991)
브라질의 경제안정화: 영속적 실패의 정치경제학
Economic Stabilization in Brazil: Political Economy of Repeated Failures
- Issue Date
- 서울대학교 라틴아메리카연구소(SNUILAS)
- Revista Iberoamericana, Vol.2, pp. 31-75
- This paper attempts from a political economy perspective to identify the
common factors underlying the ineffectiveness of the economic stabilization
policies tried under three different political regimes of Brazil: populist, military,
A rather careful examination of the ineffective or abortive stabilization efforts
reveals that at least three factors accounted for their failures. First
were the political restraints under which the policy-makers had to operate. Of
particular relevance to stabilization was the type of political legitimation all
three regimes relied much on: instrumental legitimation. All the regimes
under discussion tried, among other things, to gain and maintain legitimacy
by showing off their instrumentality in achieving the socially valued goods.
The populist and redemocratized regimes distributed state patronage to all the
politically relevant sectors and classes. The increasing commitments of the
state contri-buted to budget deficit, which in turn fueled inflation. The military
regime justified itself, among others, on the promise of better economic performance.
Instrumental legitimation restricted the mode and scope of
antiinflationary policies and the finetuning of the policies in the process of implementation.
For example, downsizing of the fat state bureaucracy, reduction
of the subsidies and transfers, selloff of inefficient state enterprises were
largely outside the policy options under the two democratic regimes. Under
the military regime(perhaps under all regimes because the continued state patronage presu-pposed an increasing economic pie), any stabilization policy inimical
to economic growth was out of the question. Thus, whenever forced to
choose between the alternatives of recession and inflation or stabilization and
growth, Brazil consistently chose the first options.
Second, in all failures were visible schisms in the dominant bloc concerning
the development strategy and the foreign economic relations. Although they
were starker in the late populist and the redemocratized regimes, they were
there even under the seemingly monolithic military regime. These schisms obviously
impaired the policy consistency and the ability to respond in time to
the new problems emerging in the course of policy implementation.
Third, in all cases of failure the organized interests displayed a common pattern
of behavior. Particularly, organized labor and the capitalists were more
intent on maintaining and increasing their own share of the economic pie than
trying to solve problems through compromises and concession. No doubt, the
end result of this distributional struggle was failure of stabilization which
exacted more sacrifices than otherwise would.
The only exception to the general pattern outlined above was stabilization
in the early period of the military rule(l964~73). Enjoying a degree of "retrospective
legitimacy" in reaction to the chaos of the late populist period and
largely free, if for a time, from the particular interests of the civil society
through coercive political exclusion, the state could implement more effectively
stabilization programs more orthodox in their content than any other stabilization
program in postwar Brazil. The real test of the military regime's ability
and commitment to stabilize occurred only after the Oil Shock and the defeat
in the 1974 election changed the political and economic terrain of the
country. Faced with a choice of stabilization and inflation, the state opted for
inflation with growth at the expense of stabilization with recession.