Losing Ground in the Employment Challenge: The Case of Paraguay

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  • Edition: 1st
  • Format: Hardcover
  • Copyright: 2010-03-15
  • Publisher: Routledge

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Most developing countries face significant and sometimesdramatic challenges in generating stable jobs that providereasonable incomes and decent working conditions. For developingcountries that have undergone lengthy periods ofeconomic stagnation, these challenges are especially acute,and popular dissatisfaction correspondingly marked.Paraguay is a case in point. It is unlikely that any employmentpolicy” could lead to a major improvement inthe quality of labor market outcomes unless designed andimplemented in a sophisticated and coherent way. Suchan approach has been infrequent in developing countriesin general, and especially so in those that, like Paraguay,also suffer severe institutional weaknesses of governance.Paraguay’s past failure in employment creation is mainly theresult of a number of structural weaknesses described in thisvolume. Its current crisis is also the accumulated legacy ofover a quarter century of economic stagnation and politicalfailure fl owing from those weaknesses. The new reformistadministration of President Fernando Lugo has raisedhopes that the future might be better than the past.This study aims to contribute to improved policy makingby analyzing the source of the problems and providingpolicy recommendations. The chapters describe the potentialcontribution of various policy areas in the face of adauntingly negative track record and identify a number ofsteps that have to be taken if success is to be achieved. Theyput into perspective the reforms that have been undertakento date by the country’s previous administration.Paraguay’s experience offers insight into the problemsfaced by other developing countries in today’s global economy.The central message is that policy improvements must bemade in a number of areas and implemented in a coordinatedfashion for there to be any reasonable hope of success.

Table of Contents

Illustrationsp. vii
List of Contributorsp. ix
Acknowledgmentsp. xiii
Introductionp. 1
Elements of an Employment Strategy for Paraguayp. 11
Labor Market Functioning in Paraguayp. 41
The Role of Agriculturep. 61
Farm Size-Productivity Relationships in Paraguay's Agricultural Sectorp. 85
Potential and Future of Paraguayan Family Farmingp. 101
Industry and MSMEs in Paraguay: Their Potential for the Creation of Remunerative Employmentp. 123
Patterns of Productivity Enhancement in Small and Medium Enterprises: "Higher-Order" Upgradingp. 143
Growth and Technological Modernizationp. 163
The Challenge to the Educational and Training System in Paraguayp. 181
Macroeconomic Policyp. 197
The Role of International Trade in Growth and Employment Generation in Paraguayp. 215
Paraguay's Financial System and Employment-Creationp. 241
Political Economy of Policymaking in Paraguayp. 265
Recent Reforms: Results and Challengesp. 295
Recommendationsp. 323
Indexp. 333
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