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New Honorary Advisor

Please welcome Robert A. Lawson, Asst. Prof. Economics, Capital
University, Ohio, USA, as Honorary Advisor. He is one of the two authors
of the Economic Freedom of the World Project, the latest report on which
can be found at:


We see as per this report that India's aggregate score on economic
freedom has increased from 3.8 1990 to 5.3 in 1997. This compares with
9.6 for Hong Kong, 9.4 for Singapore and 9.1 for USA (all 1997 figures)
and 2.5 for Myanmar (wow!! there are folks who fare worse than us in
this wide wide world!). This is the aggregate rank. The aggregate is
based on the following 7 independent areas of economic freedom:

(7.6) Area I: Size of Government: Consumption, Transfers, and Subsidies
(3.5) Area II: Structure of the Economy and Use of Markets
(8.8) Area III: Monetary Policy and Price Stability
(3.4) Area IV: Freedom to Use Alternative Currencies
(8.6) Area V: Legal Structure and Property Rights
(3.2) Area VI: International Exchange: Freedom to Trade with Foreigners
(3.8) Area VII: Freedom of Exchange in Capital and Financial Markets

The figures to the left (in parentheses) are India's scores in those
areas. We seem to have a 'reasonable' property rights structure in
place. I would agree with that except for the massive state
appropriation of private property through corruption in the provision
(or non-provision) of public services, and the huge drain imposed on
entrepreneurs by our (often) highly corrupt and dilatory legal system,
and worse: the many needless reports, inspections and laws that strangle
entrepreneurship, which is what we are talking about here (economic
freedom = the freedom to be an entrepreneur). There is something known
as excessive legalization of a primitive economy.  Personally,
therefore, I would rank India not more than 5.0 on this area.

Also: I have linked up the following article in the 'notes' section: 

"What Everyone Should Know About Economics and Prosperity," by James D.
Gwartney and Richard L. Stroup Adapted for Canadian readers by Michael
A. Walker The Fraser Institute, Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada

This article makes pretty good reading. For those interested in
improving their knowledge of fundamentals of how an economy should be
run, I would recommend this article. 



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