The Paradox of Export Growth in Areas of Weak Governance: The Case of the Ready Made Garment Sector in Bangladesh

Faisal Z. Ahmed, Anne Greenleaf, Audrey Sacks

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

62 Scopus citations

Abstract

Can export growth occur in states with weak governance and competitive clientelism? Conventional wisdom is that effective industrial policy requires a politically stable country with a centralized government. Absent these conditions, countries can pursue alternative types of industrial policies. Contexts with stable, or predictable, mis-governance and a government committed to nonintervention can yield strong export performance. We test this hypothesis in Bangladesh by examining the creation of industrial policy in the Ready Made Garment (RMG) sector. This paper highlights how the particular "political settlement" in Bangladesh has created a viable environment in which the RMG sector continues to grow.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)258-271
Number of pages14
JournalWorld Development
Volume56
DOIs
StatePublished - Apr 2014

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Geography, Planning and Development
  • Development
  • Sociology and Political Science
  • Economics and Econometrics

Keywords

  • Bangladesh
  • Industrial policy
  • Political settlement
  • Ready made garments

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