I was impressed by his thesis in the book : The Mystery of Capital (BookList)
Some interesting discussion in the comments here :
One of the interesting points about his promotion of PropertyRights is it's pragmatism. While he thinks property is a very good thing to stimulate the economy, it isn't based in any idea of natural rights. De Soto discusses how property rights get created by the government to reward land grabs. (With many historic examples from the US)
Recent speech : As Professor Friedman said in his remarks, the sorts of solutions that poor countries need are the kinds of things that developed countries did in the 19th Century, not the 21st Century. In other words, what occurred in the West in the 19th century is now occurring in developing countries.
- And another speech : http://www.cato.org/special/friedman/desoto/2001-10-30.html
- Tribe discussion :
De Soto looks at economic activity in the BlackMarket and suggests trying to get it legitimized. He says that governments don't know how to make this economic activity legal and explicit because they erroneously assume the reason people use it is to avoid paying taxes. He thinks it's more about avoiding red-tape.
More support in ThePowerOfProductivity
Contrast : GlobalizationAndItsDiscontents (when the sequencing of PropertyRights causes more trouble.)