A liberalization of economic policies has inspired considerable economic growth and encouraged the development of Burma's natural resources, but, according to David Steinberg, the current military government is akin to previous civilian governments in its commitment to socialism as a vehicle for development. The economic flexibility demonstrated by the government has not been matched by political liberalization, and as a result, economic growth remains a captive of administrative and policy constraints. Steinberg traces the origins and acceptance of socialist thought and planning in Burma and shows how socialist ideology has had to be tempered with pragmatism in order to make economic development possible. Looking to Burma's future, he also points out two central problems facing the country: strained minority relations, which have kept the nation from developing a sense of unity, and difficulties with political succession brought on by the military regime's preoccupation with perpetuating its own leadership.
Table of Contents
Also of Interest -- Preface -- Measurements and Exchange Rates -- Introduction -- The Military Coup of 1962 and Its Antecedents -- The Economics of Political Inversion, 1962–1972 -- The Reassessment of Priorities, 1972 -- The Constitution of 1974 and Bureaucratic Change -- Income and the Social Sector -- Agricultural Potential and Performance -- Economic Performance: Industry and Trade -- The Development Outlook for Burma -- Conclusions: The Burmese Road Toward Development