c. Not all market reforms and privatisation programs are successful - without strong legal and regulatory frameworks market or financial collapses can occur.
d. Strong institutions are needed to manage change, including strong public organisations.
e. Equity and social issues need to be considered if economic reform is to be sustainable, which includes the continued political will to support reform.
f. Alongside market reforms, social reforms need to begin to reduce 'economic vulnerability, poverty, exclusion and inequality'. Put simply, poverty and inequality are bad for growth (Lora & Panizza 2002, p22).
It seems, then, that the 21st century has opened with a much deeper knowledge of the processes of structural change available to decision makers and institutions. Whether this will be mobilised for a better future will in part rely on the ability for Latin American countries and social groups to become a partner in global processes and decision making, rather than just a subject (or victim) of them.
4. From Dependence to Interdependence
As we have seen, Latin America was first subject to conquest by Europeans, then dominated under a colonial system which exploited mineral, agricultural and human resources as part of the emerging global capitalist system (see Braudel 1986). Even when nationalism became to shake off the control of Spain (and more gradually Portugal), these new states were still linked into the emerging world economy as primary producers and secondary markets. Thus it is possible to conceptualise the current period of globalisation as simply an intensification of the centre-periphery that have been running for over four centuries. Thus it must be recognised that the Caribbean, for example, has been subject to economic control by outside powers from the 1500s onward, with all plantation crops oriented to exports and almost all other necessities imported (Klak 1999, p110). Thus, current '"globalizing" trends represent another round of powerful external influences for a region historically shaped by exogenous decisions and events' (Klak 1999, p110).
This was particularly true for the smaller countries of Central America and the Caribbean, which became highly vulnerable as export-dependent, small states: -
Within Latin America, Middle American countries have over time remained especially vulnerable owing to their distorted, underdeveloped and peripheral economies. As the example of bananas illustrated, these countries have overemphasized a few export-orientated primary products, particularly agriculture and in a few cases mining. They have also relied on imported industrial and commercial goods and on foreign capital and expertise to feed people, to service industry, and to finance internal capital expansion. (Klak 1999, p108)
From the 20th century onwards, larger Latin American countries sought to build their own modern industries, and to reverse this dependence by producing their own manufacturing through import substitution industrialisation (ISI) programs whereby the state would have a central role in planning, especially in areas of heavy industry and energy production (Klak 1999, p100). Although this effort did produce