We are pleased to present the fifteenth issue of 4liberty.eu Review, titled “Mythical Self-Sufficiency in Reality”. This time, our primary focus is on autarky, as it continues to be viewed by numerous CEE governments as an appealing idea to follow.
Some ideas have a tendency to survive in the minds of people, no matter how many times they are proven wrong. The economic nationalism, under the name of self-sufficiency or autarky, has not been a new concept. The idea dates back at least to the era of Mercantilism of the French monarchy under Louis XIV.
Humans are a social species. This is not unique within mammals, as many live in packs. These animals enjoy support of other group members, but their roles are mostly uniform. At the same time, the level of specialization humans developed is barely comparable with social insects like ants or bees.
Throughout the last year and a half, the COVID-19 pandemic has revealed weaknesses in healthcare, education, digitalization, and data collection, just to name a few. The shortages of essential goods experienced by many countries during the pandemic has inspired some to turn inwards.
In Slovakia, the agricultural policy over the last years has been focused on increasing food self-sufficiency. Already in 2014 the Ministry of Agriculture, under the leadership of Ľubomír Jahnátek, aimed to increase the food self-sufficiency rate to 80%.
Throughout our history, autarky has been an attractive idea for many, and while today’s public debate rarely includes a call to shut down the country and build a self-sufficient utopia, we may occasionally come across attempts to set up parts of the economy independent of external partners.
The COVID-19 pandemic has exposed both the strength and fragility of international trade links. Like other countries, Ukraine has appeared at the crossroad of two trends. On the one hand, in response to panic, Ukraine had imposed several protective measures.
On January 20, 2021, the Chamber of Deputies of the Parliament of the Czech Republic approved an amendment to the Food Act proposed by the SPD, which implements an unprecedented anti-market measure in the form of food sales quotas into Czech legislation.
One of the defining processes in the world market economy transformed by globalization is the appreciation of localization. The intensification of regionalization processes also means that communities seek solutions to economic challenges locally by trying to create self-sufficient economies.