New middle income countries in the Global South are leveraging established neocolonial
structures of dependence to extract raw resources from other countries in the Global South. In
Belize, China’s demand for tropical hardwoods has come face-to-face with an indigenous land
rights movement. Using the extraction of rosewood from Belize as a case, this paper explores
the following questions: (1) What do new patterns of neocolonial extraction look like? (2) Who
are the actors at both ends of the relationship? (3) What tools have indigenous communities used
to protect their economic and self-governing rights? and (4) Have they been successful?
Professional paper for the fulfillment of the Master of Public Policy program.
Economies of Plunder: The Case of Rosewood Extraction and Indigenous Rights in Southern Belize.
Hubert H. Humphrey School of Public Affairs.
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