Agribusiness Facing Its Limits : The Re-design of Neoliberalization Strategies in the Exporting Agriculture Sector in Chile

Department of Social Sciences, University of Bio-Bio, Avda. Collao 1202, 4051381 Concepción, Chile,
Panez, Alexander;
Institute of Hydraulic Engineering and Water Resources Management, University of Duisburg-Essen, 45141 Essen, Germany,
Roose, Ilka;
Department of Industrial Engineering, University of Chile, 832000 Domeyko, Chile,
Faúndez, Rodrigo

The core neoliberal strategy of Chilean agrarian politics has lasted now for more than 30 years. Despite minor reforms, its fundamental pillars remain in place. While members of the agribusiness sector consider this strategy to be a role-model for food production leading to explosive economic growth, the last decade exposed its socio-ecological limits, such as declining water availability and increased conflicts over land. Taking critical literature on neoliberalization as a theoretical approach, we used law and literature reviews as well as qualitative interviews with actors from the public and private sectors to reveal the details of the strategies in the exporting agriculture sector in Chile. From the understanding of neoliberalization as a multi-layered process, we analyzed the data, focusing on three dimensions of agribusiness in Chile: (a) regulation, (b) spatial fix, and (c) ideological paradigms. In doing so, we uncovered how far the coping strategies chosen by the state and private sector have re-designed and strengthened the process of agriculture neoliberalization in order to push its own socio-ecological limits.


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