Wednesday, March 23, 2011

State Capitalism (China) Vs State Capitalism (S'pore)

Both countries have the state controlling majority stakes in companies listed on stock exchange hence the term- State Capitalism. Very little is touched on S'pore's type in books written by western authors. So what's the difference you might ask? Following headline from yahoo finance gives a good surmise:
'US companies remain deeply concerned over China's
regulations that favor local companies at possible expense of foreign
In China their govt uses state capitalism to strengthen the local companies so as to employ more of their population - happy about their wages & lives & in turn support govt. In S'pore is quite the opposite. In recent years the govt has flooded in masses of cheaper foreign labour to suppress wages so as to have higher earnings for the state controlled listed companies. Lower productivity is a result.(short term benefits at expense of long term)

With much of the population's wages stagnating/declining in real terms & highly in debt due to mortgages, there isn't much discretionary spending power left to fuel the economy further. How can most businesses grow when consumers don't have much spending power?

Thus far none of S'pore's businesses(non-state) make it big compared to other Tiger economies like HK, S Korea & Taiwan. Is also a reason why people say the current govt has run out of ideas to grow the economy & the casinos are a desperate measure. With the resources of the state backing those state controlled companies, private companies have a hard time in certain sectors of the economy - hence there is no free market.

Current state of affairs is among 1 factor leading me to have a bearish view on S'pore's future.

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