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A view about the theory of the new imperialist countries

By Abdesselam Adib, December 2018


At the invitation of Indian comrades to participate in an international symposium organized by the Communist Party of India, Marxist-Leninist, Red Star, (28th of November 2018), on the issue of the emergence of new imperial countries newly formed from countries that were until recently subjected to the new colonialism, in my view on this subject from the preparatory work that I have gathered on the draft book I will publish soon. This paper has been reduced in some respects. The content of the contribution is as follows:

1 - For Lenin, the imperialist phase of capitalism, that is to say its most recent phase at the beginning of the 20th century, began in 1898, and therefore Marx and Engels would not have known it completely. According to Lenin, five points characterize this phase:

1 - Concentration of production and capital attained a degree of development so high that it created the monopolies, whose role is decisive in the economic life;

2 - Merging banking capital and industrial capital, and creating, based on this "financial capital", a financial oligarchy;

3 - The export of capital, unlike the export of goods, takes on a very special importance;

4 - Formation of monopolistic international unions of capitalists sharing the world, and

5 - End of the territorial division of the globe between the largest capitalist powers.


(Lenin, Imperialism, The Highest Stage of Capitalism, Social Editions, p.124)

2 - Karl Marx already spoke in his unpublished chapter n ° VI of the trajectory of the capitalist mode of production, so he spoke of a phase of formal submission of the work to the capital, which precedes a second phase of a real submission of the work in the capital. The transition from one phase to another is verified at the level of techniques and mode of production for the realization of surplus value and profits. Therefore, according to this thesis, there is a dialectical law that acts on the movement of the capitalist mode of production and the fulfilment of its real domination over labour.

3 - From the two theses one can understand and analysed new developments in the movement of capitalism during each period. Thus at the beginning of the century, all the developmental aspects of capitalism emphasized the qualitative and contradictory leap in the movement of capital. On the one hand, in the former capitalist countries, there has been a transition from a formal labour submission to a real domination of capital over labour through different technologies of production and reproduction of life. This passage was marked by the increase of the organic components of the dead capital, at the expense of the living capital component. At the same time, there has been a further decline in the profit rates due to the saturation of the solvent markets. On the other hand, the unrestrained competition between the imperialist powers to share existing markets, already saturated, by considering different ways to cause a massive destruction of the means of production to generate a new phase of growth plus value and profit.

4 - The transition from a phase of formal domination of the capital to a phase of real domination in the advanced capitalist countries. Between 1914 date of the outbreak of the First World War and 1980 the date of adoption of neoliberal policies to temporarily curb the crisis of debt, was marked by another passage from colonialism to neo-colonialism and a new imperialist period.

5 - The five characteristics which, according to Lenin, marked imperialism at the beginning of the century, developed slowly and surely in a complex manner during the bipolarization between the two blocks of East and West. However, just after the explosion of this bipolarization in 1991, a multi polarization gave the impetus to a competitive race, without mercy, but in the interdependence, between the different monopolies; it is thus that a new organization of international production has been able to deepen and extend the real domination of capital over labour on a world scale.

6 - Each imperialist nation therefore has every interest in the potential markets for its national monopolies being as wide as possible, in order to favour the production of relative surplus value, and the rate of profit in each of them. The own movement of national monopolies thus irresistibly pushes each nation to increase the external field of production, and to increase its importance on the world market.

7 - The real domination of capitalism over labour is carried out essentially under the supervision of the States, which have become the main instruments for the services of the monopolies. The interdependence between the great monopolies, unified neoliberal economic and social policies in all states, and under this real domination of capital, we saw the development of new monopolies in some neo-colonial countries.

8 - The cyclical crises that accompanied the evolution of the real domination of capital over labour, have contributed well to bring out these new monopolies in neo-colonial countries. As a result, the length of time separating the crises of overproduction since 1990 in average from 7 years to 5 or 4 years, the strategic and rapid movements of capital and industrial activities of the monopolies, from areas infected by the crisis to less infected areas. It was a requirement to increase their profits without stopping. So neo-colonial countries like the BRICS countries and the MIST countries as well as other Golf countries, took advantage of this situation during the period (1990 - 2018) to develop their monopolies and extend their influences by taking advantage of imperialist strategies or the like.

9 – So, it is normal that such a development occurs, because the evolution of capitalism in the phase of real domination, and especially since 1990, develops according to laws quite different from that of the colonial era and the formal domination of capital. The dialectical interdependence, between capitalist monopolies, even in a pyramidal structure and the superpowers' superintendence namely the US, Russia and China. Towards other less powerful imperialists, such as England, France, Germany, Japan ... etc. has contributed under the multi-polarization to bring out of neo-imperialist, in areas that have offered the former monopolies opportunities to continue to accumulate more valuable and huge profits.

10 - By way of conclusion, we find that this theory of neo-imperialists stands on solid ground and that it is difficult to ignore it. This conclusion encourages us to deepen our concrete and scientific analyses of the concrete situation of the capitalist system under its phase of real domination.


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