Socialism, Not Neoliberalism, Creates Stability: Bolivia’s Evo

telesur | 15 March, 2017

Evo Morales. Source: Internet

Bolivian President Evo Morales on Wednesday praised his country’s economic system, saying its planned socialist model is more stable than that of previous neoliberal administrations.

“During neoliberalism, Bolivia did not have the capacity of getting out of debt,” Morales posted on Twitter Tuesday.

“Now, 177 investors offer bonds thanks to economic stability.”

Since beginning Bolivia’s transition to socialism in 2006, Morales has vastly improved the country’s economy.

He implemented countless macroeconomic policies which increased state revenue from the country’s natural resources in order to invest in social programs. This strategy helped increase investment in public spending by over 750 percent over the last nine years.

He also increased Bolivia’s hydrocarbon gas production from 33 million cubic meters to 56 million cubic meters in 2013. As a result, the Bolivian government estimates that it will become completely self-reliant on natural gas production within the next few years.

Bolivia achieved the highest increase in real minimum wage (104 percent from 2005-2013) than any other Latin American country within the last decade. The socialist country is one of a few in the region to offer two-holiday bonuses to workers if the government believes the economy grew enough.

Last December, the Bolivian government announced an improvement in the growing rate of the economy in 2017, since it expects oil and other natural resource prices to gain stability.

“Oil is growing stable, that’s why we believe 2017 will be a year in which we’ll find the Bolivian economy much better than this year, and that encourages us,” Bolivian Economy Minister Luis Arce said during a press conference.

Prior to socialism, Bolivia’s economy depended heavily on the IMF and the World Bank. In the 1970s, the country contracted massive loans to finance private mining and agriculture export industries. These private loans enriched a handful of transnational companies in the relevant sectors.

By the mid-1980s, Bolivia had reached a severe debt crisis following a surge of foreign capital from mainly private international banks.

Throughout the 80s and 90s, Bolivia was ranked one of the poorest countries in the world.



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