A Comparative Study of State-Led Development in Myanmar (1988–2010) and Suharto’s Indonesia: An Approach from the Developmental State Theory

Sai Khaing Myo Tun


This article explores the institutionalization of state-led development in Myanmar after 1988 in comparison with Suharto’s Indonesia. The analysis centres on the characteristics and theory of developmental states that emerged from the studies of East Asian countries like Japan, South Korea, and Taiwan. In Southeast Asia, Suharto’s Indonesia was perceived as a successful case and was studied by scholars in line with the characteristics of the developmental state. The Tatmadaw (military) government in Myanmar was believed to follow the model of state-led development in Indonesia under Suharto where the military took the role of establishing economic and political development. However, Myanmar has yet to achieve its goal of building a successful state-led development. Therefore, this paper argues that implementing an efficient and effective institutionalization is essential for a successful state-led development (developmental state) in Myanmar.

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