The Indian Economy Blog

Archive for the 'Economic History' Category

Surely, FT Can Find Better Columnists On India

Friday, April 20th, 2007

Anyone who writes about there being “two Indias” is necessarily wrong. Anyone who describes India’s jettisoning of the licence raj in 1991 using words like “neo-liberal” is necessarily confused. And anyone who writes about Indian agriculture quoting P Sainath and no one else is necessarily unbalanced. Rajinder Sahota, writing in the Financial Times (they actually [...]

In the Lounge with Bill Emmott

Sunday, April 8th, 2007

Niranjan Rajadhyaksha of Mint (and a good friend of IEB) meets Bill Emmott, the former editor of the Economist for a drink. An interesting conversation evolves on the rise of Asia, journalism, and the reasons for the success of the Economist. For those of you who haven’t picked up Mint yet, I would strongly recommend [...]

A Brand New Model?

Friday, February 23rd, 2007

A lot of bandwidth has been used up to discuss what model of development India should adopt: the Chinese model, the American model, the French model etc. I myself have sucked up quite a bit of bandwidth on this issue. However, I was reading an Indian business magazine (I apologize, I cannot remember which one) [...]

The Indian Productivity Miracle

Tuesday, December 19th, 2006

Back in the late 1990s, economists were trying to figure out what it was that led to the secular acceleration of economic growth in the United States: the longest and largest peace-time economic expansion in the 20th century (see footnotes). How was it that a country could grow so much and for so long without [...]

Shallowness of the West Bengal Land Reforms

Monday, December 11th, 2006

Ever since I first read about the Singur controversy, a bee has been buzzing in my bonnet. It finally bit. Six months ago, I had written a post about how the TATA Motors decision to set up a plant in West Bengal was disastrous. However I wrote that post merely from the labour trouble perspective. [...]

The Economics Of Don

Thursday, November 16th, 2006

Anthony, the third member of the Amar-Akbar-Anthony gang watched the remake of Don recently and came away with the following thoughts: In 1978, Vijay earned 11.75 rupee after singing the whole day. In 2006, he earns 3,000 rupee in three days — that’s 1,000 rupee a day. This is an 85-fold (or 8,411%) increase. According [...]

China, India And The Global Economy

Tuesday, September 19th, 2006

Ajay Shah alerts us to a draft volume published by the World Bank (free download) titled Dancing with Giants: China, India and the global economy. Drawing upon the latest research, this volume analyzes the influences on the rapid future development of these two countries and examines how their growth is likely to impinge upon other [...]

How Nehru And Shastri Made Dubai Rich

Saturday, July 15th, 2006

Bhavya Khanna relates a fascinating explanation: Nehru in his often stated brilliance imposed severe restrictions on the trade and price of Gold in India. The sheik of Dubai had free trade in Gold, and was well, a smuggler’s paradise. Combine the two and you have possibly the largest movement of illegal gold trade in the [...]

Puncture Mishra

Saturday, July 8th, 2006

The 21st century will be India’s. But some people just won’t get it.

Bollywood and Indian Economy

Friday, May 5th, 2006

What is common between these films? Garam Hawa (1940); Naya Daur (1957); Upkaar (1967); Namak Haram (1973); Jane Bhi Do Yaaron (1983); Damini (1993); Gupt (1997); Phir Bhi Dil Hai Hindustani (2000); Rang de Basanti (2006) As you might have guessed, each of these films portray the socio-economic realities of India in their times or [...]

Goodbye, John Kenneth Galbraith

Sunday, April 30th, 2006

Ignorance, stupidity, in great affairs of state is not something that is commonly cited. A certain political and historical correctlness requires us to assign some measure of purpose, of rationality, even where, all to obviously, it does not exist. Nonetheless one cannot look with detachment on the Great War (and also its aftermath) without thought [...]

IMF Paper on India’s Pattern of Development

Thursday, February 2nd, 2006

The IMF has just published an excellent working paper authored among others by Raghuram Rajan, the chief economist of the Fund and Arvind Subramanian, also of the Fund. If you want a comprehensive overview of the idiosyncratic path of the Indian economy since 1947, there’s no better read than India’s Pattern of Development. In addition, [...]

Why Does India Have Such Poor Politicians? – 1

Thursday, January 12th, 2006

A V Rajwade, in an op-ed in the Business Standard complains that the economy’s changing, but leaders aren’t. He covers many of the things we’ve discussed here on IEB — among them, the re-emergence of manufacturing & the (somewhat) increased interest in agriculture. However, to me the most interesting portion was this tidbit at the [...]

Why We Reformed What We Did

Tuesday, December 6th, 2005

It is a rare occurrence when someone agrees with me, so I might as well record it when it happens. Ramnath and I have managed to agree that privatization is not the most important reform measure. We also managed to agree on which one it would be. We both say that product market liberalization is [...]

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