BRICS and MICs in Bolivia’s ‘value’-chain agriculture

18 May 2015
Paper

A new phase of ‘foreignization’ and land grabbing is occurring via value-chain relations in Bolivia. Exogenous forces from some BRICS and MICs are penetrating Bolivia’s countryside and drastically changing social relations of production, reproduction, property and power.

These processes are analyzed by disaggregating the agro-industrial value chain and revealing where the ‘value’ being generated is appropriated and how the terms of control and access are changing. While several phases of ‘foreignization’ have shaped the agrarian structure, the legalization of genetically-modified soybeans and the resultant ‘appropriationism’ have opened new spaces for capital accumulation and enabled capital to penetrate, particularly from Brazil, Argentina, and China.

This is understood using Harvey’s concept of a spatio-temporal fix as new forms of commodification have developed and small farmers are becoming absorbed into value-chain relations, threatening their ability to work their land now and in the future.