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energy sector

Attracting Foreign Investment

Third World countries blessed with large populations but hamstrung by limited resources must be extremely careful in choosing the direction their economies must take, particularly if they want to attract foreign investment and entrepreneurial skills to bolster their economic threshold and stay ahead of the population explosion. There can be no definitive role model, each nation has different needs peculiar to its relative circumstances, but one thing is certain, the Soviet model of a controlled economy has been a total failure, as exposed in the west by Thatcher’s revitalization of the moribund British economy by wholesale dismantling of the public sector by disinvestment across the board. The COMECON countries are now all following the devolution route that China took in 1979, anathema to socialistic thinking but an economic boon for its consumer-product starved masses. The chief aberration in the obsolete Soviet system was a bureaucratic penchant for central control and organisation, a “guided” method from top to bottom while the basic requirement for economic emancipation of the masses is that while the parameters may be laid out, the free enterprise system envisages incentive, ability and performance for individual as well as collective rewards in an openly competitive environment rather than arbitrary bureaucracy imposed fiat. A genuine free enterprise system attracts external investment by the force of its rewards, with clear-cut profit-motivated objectives.