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The Bolivian economy continued to struggle in the years after the implementation of the far-reaching economic, political, and social reforms authorized by Supreme Decree 21060, which put Bolivia firmly in the grip of the Washington Consensus. Although hyperinflation was under control by 1987, the rate of economic growth remained anemic. Neoliberal technocrats blamed this on various factors, including weak rates of foreign investment, bureaucratic ineffciency (especially in banking and the legal system), and ongoing resistance to the broader process of structural adjustment by center-left political parties and the public-sector unions.

Despite Jaime Paz Zamora’s background as cofounder of the socialist...

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