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Working Paper 128 - China’s Manufacturing and Industrialization in Africa

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  • Ron Sandrey
  • Hannah Edinger
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    Abstract

    While a succession of Asian countries haveexhibited dramatic growth over the last thirtyto fifty years, Africa has largely stagnated.This Asian expansion has been driven bymanufacturing exports to the US inparticular, and enabled through an overallconstructive policy package that openedmarkets, implemented favourable trade andexchange rate policies, and provided asound and stable government that inspiredinvestment and secured property rights.Conversely, Africa has been unable to putthe full package in place, and this hasresulted in a manufacturing sector whosecontribution to both GDP and export sharesis significantly below the continents’developing country peers. Growth in naturalresource-rich developing countries ingeneral has lagged behind those with amanufacturing focus, and this is especiallythe case in Africa with its poor linkages intounskilled labour and its appetite for rentseekingactivities. Africa’s industrial base isnot as robust as theory suggests it shouldbe. Using the continent’s export profile to theUS 90 percent or more is either a dominantmineral fuel or precious minerals for thoseAfrican countries with significant exports.Other than South Africa, manufacturingexports are notably absent, with only textilesand clothing featuring in those countrieswhere manufacturing also features.Importantly Africa has difficulty to capitaliseon its significant tariff preferences into theUS, and we examine the thesis that China ismaking it harder for Africa to diversify awayfrom its natural resource-based exportprofile.

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    Bibliographic Info

    Paper provided by African Development Bank in its series Working Paper Series with number 294.

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    Date of creation: 23 Jun 2011
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    Handle: RePEc:adb:adbwps:294

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    1. Ge, Wei, 1999. "Special Economic Zones and the Opening of the Chinese Economy: Some Lessons for Economic Liberalization," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 27(7), pages 1267-1285, July.
    2. Kaplinsky, Raphael & Morris, Mike, 2008. "Do the Asian Drivers Undermine Export-oriented Industrialization in SSA," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 36(2), pages 254-273, February.
    3. Trindade, Vitor, 2005. "The big push, industrialization and international trade: The role of exports," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 78(1), pages 22-48, October.
    4. Jorg Mayer & Adrian Wood, 2001. "South Asia's Export Structure in a Comparative Perspective," Oxford Development Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 29(1), pages 5-29.
    5. Din, Musleh-ud, 1994. "Export processing zones and backward linkages," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 43(2), pages 369-385, April.
    6. Anthony J. Venables & William Maloney & Ari Kokko & Claudio Bravo Ortega & Daniel Lederman & Roberto Rigobón & José De Gregorio & Jesse Czelusta & Shamila A. Jayasuriya & Magnus Blomström & L. Coli, . "Natural Resources: Neither Curse nor Destiny," IDB Publications 59538, Inter-American Development Bank.
    7. Benn Eifert & Alan Gelb & Vijaya Ramachandran, 2005. "Business Environment and Comparative Advantage in Africa: Evidence from the Investment Climate Data," Working Papers 56, Center for Global Development.
    8. Ben Hammouda, Hakim & Karingi, Stephen & Njuguna, Angelica & Sadni Jallab, Mustapha, 2006. "Diversification: towards a new paradigm for Africa’s development," MPRA Paper 13359, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    9. Wood, Adrian & Mayer, Jorg, 2001. "Africa's Export Structure in a Comparative Perspective," Cambridge Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 25(3), pages 369-94, May.
    10. Carmody, Pádraig, 2009. "An Asian-Driven Economic Recovery in Africa? The Zambian Case," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 37(7), pages 1197-1207, July.
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