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More on Honduras

September 6, 2012

Honduran President Porfirio Lobo

Deeper coverage from the AP:

Congress president Juan Hernandez said the investment group MGK will invest $15 million to begin building basic infrastructure for the first model city near Puerto Castilla on the Caribbean coast. That first city would create 5,000 jobs over the next six months and up to 200,000 jobs in the future, Hernandez said. South Korea has given Honduras $4 million to conduct a feasibility study, he said.

“The future will remember this day as that day that Honduras began developing,” said Michael Strong, CEO of the MKG Group. “We believe this will be one of the most important transformations in the world, through which Honduras will end poverty by creating thousands of jobs.”

And the Guardian offers the take you would expect.

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13 Comments
  1. valueprax permalink
    September 6, 2012 8:37 pm

    I wonder if you can really create a free market city of the future when all the politicians who are “letting you do it” insist on treating it like it’s a jobs program. I hope these little children can keep their fingers out of the pie…

    • September 13, 2012 12:27 am

      You have a point however , Rommer has tried and failed on a few occasions with other countries perhaps this was the way they figured they could sell it with out hordes of whom ever is left in honduras freaking out. I would want to read their charter and the Honduras agreement before I make investments… however very promising.

  2. Darrell permalink
    September 8, 2012 10:43 pm

    As fascinated as I am by this project, I’m highly skeptical of it. They try selling it like they’re going to make the next Singapore or Hong Kong, completely ignoring that their importance has a lot to do with their locations, not just their special legal status. I worry that MKG and its partners are exploiting a desperate and impoverished nation by making promises they can never deliver.

  3. September 10, 2012 9:36 am

    They have to sort out the transparency thing with Romer soon.It would be pretty damaging getting more bad press and negative political views… Hope they get through with it!

  4. September 10, 2012 12:26 pm

    I have trouble understanding why they constituted the board and why with the current membership. If you’ve got to have a board, there are legitimate libertarian experts on non-State society-building (Profs Leeson and Coyne of GMU come to mind).

    Moreover, it seems to me you’d get just as much legitimacy without the ideological quibbling if a private firm led the project, hiring somebody like Romer as a consultant rather than an academic junta.

    More than whether charter cities can work, it seems to me the real leap of faith here is that a ruling board made up of academics has ever competently run any organization whatsoever. Unless the board is just window-dressing. In which case, surprise, it’ll rebel and repudiate. In which case the project would’ve been better without the board.

    • lch permalink
      September 14, 2012 2:53 am

      I agree, maybe the board was the only way they could sell the idea, but it is more harm than good especially in the long term when it will become packed with cronies of a controlling interest. Nevertheless, it might be alright for 30 or 40 years or so before that point. It would have been better just leaving it open for the free-market to work.

  5. Wonks Anonymous permalink
    September 10, 2012 9:10 pm

    Here is Romer’s statement, a legal challenge has meant he had no involvement and wasn’t even aware of the deal:
    http://chartercities.org/blog/231/honduras-update

  6. liberty90 permalink
    September 11, 2012 5:50 pm

    Interview with Mr.Michael Strong, CEO of MKG Group: http://soundcloud.com/freetalklive/ftl-interviews-michael-strong

    • Darrell permalink
      September 13, 2012 11:32 am

      Thanks for posting this, it’s an interesting interview. Michael Strong strikes me as a very high-minded and sincere individual, I just hope his associates are the same.

  7. Nyk permalink
    September 12, 2012 6:58 pm

    But what happens if you have a coup in ‘mainland’ Honduras, and the new government wants to put an end to neocolonialism through any means necessary? Will the Charter City have someone willing to protect it (like China)? Because I’m not really sure that Liberal Western countries charged with protecting the Charter City will respond to any invasion by the natives.

    • lch permalink
      September 14, 2012 2:42 am

      Well the upside is that if the cities take off people will be happy and there may be no coup(s).

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Trackbacks

  1. A. FreeMan’s Freedom Toolbox for September 2012 – Added to the toolbox this month: Free Cities, Spotify, and Feedley w/ Google Reader RSS : The Agora Telegraph

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