Special economic zones (SEZs) are sometimes powerful tools of development and industrialization. Alas, in too many occasions, SEZs have shown their destructive sides, as tools for rent-seeking and ways to avoid beneficial reforms. In The Political Economy of Special Economic Zones, I show the ways in which SEZs are beneficial and in which ways they do damage.
Rather than a macroeconomic analysis of zones, this requires a close look at the political economy problems and benefits of special economic zones. SEZs are commonly deemed successful when they attract investors. I show why this is a flawed view of zones and explain the institutional and political contexts that are the true sources of SEZ success.
The book also deals with the challenge that the World Trade Organization poses to SEZs and how SEZs can play a role in the development of more complex global value chains. It ends with a preview of what the SEZ landscape may look like in the future. The Political Economy of Special Economic Zones is available now on Amazon by clicking the highlighted title or this link.