Studies in Comparative International Development

, Volume 23, Issue 3, pp 51–77 | Cite as

The economics of surplus squeeze under peripheral socialism: An Ethiopian illustration

  • Berhanu Abegaz


The article explores the question of appropriate development strategy for the so-called peripheral socialist countries using Ethiopia as an example. Based on the economics of surplus and the nature of industrialization in late-socializing countries, the Ethiopian regime's “surplus squeeze” strategy is critically examined. It is shown that such a strategy, whatever its short-term goals, is detrimental to the long-term generation of sizable economic surplus and the provisioning of basic needs. It is then argued that a viable alternative is the New Economic Policy (NEP) model of a mixed economy where the state, cooperative, and private sectors grow side by side for a while on the basis of labor accumulation. NEP will eventually have to be phased out as it exhausts its economic potential and threatens the goal of building a self-reliant, egalitarian society.


Comparative International Development Land Reform Marketable Surplus Economic Surplus Early Socializer 
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© Springer 1989

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  • Berhanu Abegaz

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