The states have to compete like corporations.

States run inefficiently will have jobs, capital, and whatever moved to China.

So the president is like the CEO. The customers are the population, the businesses. The stock holders are of course the citizens.

I've heard Indonesia's finance minister think that way.

Some variants of capitalism, like georgism, even advocate giving citizenship dividend.

However, georgism is more involved with "land" ownership.

Anyone see the state like a for-profit corporation? For example, a state may decide that prostitution is tax worthy. Rather than legalizing it outright or prohibiting it, the state may think, ah, let's just tax it and improve my stock holders' dividend.

Are there states where citizens can sell their citizenships like stock owners sell their stocks?

  • I'm a little unsure of the scale of the question. Are you looking for examples where the entire state is ran like a corporation or are you after examples of for profit state owned corporations that actually make a profit Commented Apr 23, 2018 at 22:17
  • Basically I am looking for samples where the states earn profit and distribute the profit to stockholders. I am thinking citizen as stockholders. Also citizens can sell their citizenship. Citizenship has market values like stocks.
    – user4951
    Commented Apr 24, 2018 at 19:16
  • The answers I got are good enough for the question. I would ask a different question for what I want.
    – user4951
    Commented Apr 24, 2018 at 19:17

1 Answer 1


Although they aren't quite as thoroughly corporate as you describe, two political systems that might fit are state capitalism and state corporatism. State capitalism involves the state owning major for-profit businesses, and state corporatism involves corporate groups being the major policy makers.

State Corporatism Examples: The Congo Free State was a technically independent state in central Africa from 1885-1905, and is probably the best example of a corporate state. It was a state controlled by the fantastically bearded Leopold II of Belgium, who created the International Association of the Congo, a corporation with shareholders, to govern it separately from the Belgian government. He was able to create this private corporation since the Congo was defined as his private property.

Another example is the East India Company, which controlled various amounts of India from about 1757 to 1857. They were a company with stakeholders and a board of directors so it definitely fits the 'corporate' side of things, and maintained their own army and government system so they fulfilled many roles of a state. However, they were still only operating on behalf of the British government, and was dissolved by the British parliament in 1858.

State Capitalism Examples: China is often used as an example of state capitalism, as state-owned enterprises receive favorable funding, contracts, and regulation over private enterprises. This allows the government to be a major player in the Chinese economy, as these policies give state-owned enterprises an advantage.

Singapore is another example of state capitalism, as state-owned enterprises represent about a quarter of Singapore's GDP. Although these enterprises don't receive any special policy advantage as in China, they do benefit from investments from state owned sovereign wealth funds.


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