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Spatial productive circuits of clothing and vulnerability of territory in Haiti: the case of the Industrial Caracol Park (PIC)

Grant number: 21/05411-5
Support Opportunities:Scholarships in Brazil - Doctorate
Effective date (Start): October 01, 2021
Effective date (End): September 30, 2025
Field of knowledge:Humanities - Geography - Human Geography
Principal Investigator:Márcio Antonio Cataia
Grantee:Guerby Sainte
Host Institution: Instituto de Geociências (IG). Universidade Estadual de Campinas (UNICAMP). Campinas , SP, Brazil


We aim to understand the nature of the implementation of a free trade zone in Haiti. To this end, we will analyze the dynamics of the productive spatial circuit of clothing based on the economic political plots established between: I) transnational companies (clothing); II) free zone and flow logistics; III) bilateral agreements that make flows possible (HOPE and CBTPA) and; IV) the rules that the Haitian State uses to enable the predatory formation of the national territory (in the form of a free zone). For this purpose, the analysis will focus on the process of installation and operation of clothing companies in the Industrial Park of Caracol, an important free zone in the Country. As a hypothesis, it is assumed that the creation of the Caracol free zone and the installation of transnationals in the clothing sector depended on strategic alliances with the State of Haiti, especially in relation to tax incentives. Despite having contributed to some level of economic development in some regions of the Country, the installation of such companies occurred in the interest of exploring the various resources available in Haitian territory, especially cheap labor. The uncompromised and private performance of the sector's productive agents, that is, who have their own management agendas and which do not necessarily coincide with local demands, has represented several territorial implications that reverberate in the socioeconomic dynamics of cities, increasing the vulnerability of the most needy populations. The finding of the use of cheap and precarious workforce (Standing, 2011; Slee, 2017; Antunes, 2018) in poor countries is nothing new, however, in Haiti the presence of the State is evident in enabling a predatory socio-spatial formation. Herein lies the analytical strength of our hypothesis: in the political-economic plots that involve large transnational companies (from the production of the locker room), bilateral "agreements" under the aegis of the USA (in the case of HOPE and CBTPA), viability of the territory (with the zona france and logistics for flows) and the Haitian State. In this sense, the analysis of the productive space circuit of Haitian clothing will make it possible to interpret the implementation of a predatory economic formation after an event of catastrophic magnitude (the 2010 earthquake) under the guise of international humanitarian aid. (AU)

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