In a new article posted at the JCA website, Michele Ford, Michael Gillan and Htwe Htwe Thein discuss business and cronyism in contemporary Myanmar.
Their article “From Cronyism to Oligarchy? Privatisation and Business Elites in Myanmar” (DOI: 10.1080/00472336.2015.1072731), examines how privatisation, which has broad significance for the political economy, has been contentious.
The article examines two phases of privatisation, where the first phase was focused on small and medium-sized enterprises and the second phase, commencing in 2008, has consolidated the interests of a business elite with personal connections to the military regime.
The argument is that this second phase of privatisation has such elements of this elite strengthen their position and move beyond patronage, with the wealthiest strata of Myanmar’s business elite establishing a nascent form of oligarchy.