CIPE’s concept of “corrosive capital” frames an opinion piece by Tena Prelec.
Corrosive capital is not the whole story: Balkan political elites make use of foreign investments to further a narrative of themselves as ‘saviours’ of the nation.
The problems of ‘corrosive capital’ are, by now, well known. By exploiting governance weaknesses in host countries, foreign investments that are non-transparent in nature risk broadening rule of law gaps, damaging the environment, reinforcing existing patronage networks, and exacerbating inequality. Such dynamics are usually associated with money flows from authoritarian regimes, where the lines between public and private resources are blurred, and whose companies are often not held to scrutiny for corruption cases perpetuated abroad (unlike those hailing, for instance, from the US or the UK).