Bozcaga: In Search of New State Capitalism – Reflections on New Paths of SOE Management in China, Brazil, and Turkey


There is an evolving consensus in today’s world indicating that economic markets
need greater state presence and tighter regulation. Such sentiments have naturally
followed the implosion of financial markets in the late 2000s. For most of the 20th
century, national economies had “ideological blueprints” to sustain economic growth
and development. However, the evolving consensus on state presence in national
economies does not have an identifiable blueprint. Without a directive format, novel
forms of state capitalism emerge, not similar to the state capitalism of the past, where
states had full ownership of numerous major state-owned enterprises (SOEs) operating
nearly in all sectors of the domestic economy, and regulated the economy with its
“visible hand”. In these new forms, states do not regulate the economy through full
ownership of these SOEs. Instead, they either hold majority shares of SOEs following a
partial privatization, or they hold minority (but still significant) shares of certain firms.

This paper seeks to probe the practices of recently rising new state capitalism
through new forms of state ownership in SOEs in three distinct developing nations. It will
examine the forms and the concentration of state assets in the SOE shares in the
aftermath of the neoliberal transformation with a focus on China, the champion of state
capitalism in the 21st century, along with the two emerging markets: Brazil and Turkey.
It will claim that, starting from the late 1990s, the role of the state in the economy has
evolved into a new kind of state capitalism concentrating on majority shareholding in
firms operating in the upstream sectors with strategic importance.


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