Dependent Monetary Regimes in the Balkans: Enlarging the “Varieties of Capitalism” Hypothesis
Among the recent or revisited assumptions in the literature, the “dependent capitalism” hypothesis has met growing interest and relevance in the context of the 2008 economic and financial crisis. The purpose of the present article is first to expand the scope of the dependence analysis to the Balkan countries, both members and non-members of the EU, and second, to demonstrate that dependence also appears in these countries in a differentiated way through another institutional form, not included in the initial theoretical framework of Hall and Soskice, monetary regimes. A monetary regime can be considered as a structuring institutional form, expressing the power relations between national and foreign actors. In the dependent capitalism case, where foreign capital prevails and the trade balance dynamics is determined by the capital account, one could expect that monetary regimes would be implemented in a way to protect the capital and interests of foreign investors in the long term, hence to delegate monetary sovereignty to the investor’s country of origin. In the first part of the paper, some theoretical and methodological aspects of the dependent capitalism in post-socialist countries and of the specific monetary regime on which it is based, are discussed. Then, in the second part, the dependence analysis is illustrated by the case studies of monetary regimes in the Balkans during the period from 1990 to 2015. © 2020, © 2020 Taylor & Francis Group, LLC.