Is smart industry policy possible? Insights from Southeast Asia

Crawford School of Public Policy | Arndt-Corden Department of Economics

Event details

ACDE Seminar

Date & time

Tuesday 05 May 2015


Seminar Room B, Coombs Building 9, Fellows Road, ANU


Professor Hal Hill, ANU.


Arianto Patunru

Industry policy, defined as non-neutral inter-industry incentives, remains a contested field. There is general agreement about the major determinants of rapid economic development, and of the imperative of globalisation. But according to an influential school of thought, that continues to be attractive to many policymakers, governments in addition need to pursue various types of ‘activist’ industry policy. This paper assesses these issues with reference to the dynamic Southeast Asian region. We develop an analytical narrative based on case studies of sectoral dynamism in these countries and explore the causes of rapid growth, including in particular the role of public policy. Our general conclusion is that openness is an essential pre-requisite of success, but that in some cases government policy has played a significant catalytic role.

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