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China's Competitive Threat to Latin America: An Analysis for 1990-2002

  • Sanjaya Lall
  • John Weiss
  • Hiroshi Oikawa

This paper explores China's competitive threat to Latin America in trade in manufactured goods. The direct threat to exports to third country markets appears small: Latin America and the Caribbean's (LAC's) trade structure is largely complementary to that of China. In bilateral trade, several LAC countries are increasing primary and resource-based exports to China. However, the pattern of trade, with LAC specializing increasingly in resource-based products and China in manufactured goods, seems worrying. Given cumulative capability building, China's success in increasingly technology-based products with strong learning externalities can place it on a higher growth path than specialization in “simpler” goods, as in LAC. China may thus affect LAC's technological upgrading in exports and industrial production. The issue is not so much current competition as the “spaces” open for LAC in the emerging technology-based world.

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Article provided by Taylor & Francis Journals in its journal Oxford Development Studies.

Volume (Year): 33 (2005)
Issue (Month): 2 ()
Pages: 163-194

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Handle: RePEc:taf:oxdevs:v:33:y:2005:i:2:p:163-194
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  1. Krugman, Paul, 1998. "What's New about the New Economic Geography?," Oxford Review of Economic Policy, Oxford University Press, vol. 14(2), pages 7-17, Summer.
  2. John Weiss & Hossein Jalilian, 2004. "Industrialization in an age of globalization: some comparisons between East and South East Asia and Latin America," Oxford Development Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 32(2), pages 283-307.
  3. Sanjaya Lall & Manuel Albaladejo & Jinkang Zhang, 2004. "Mapping fragmentation: Electronics and automobiles in East Asia and Latin America," Oxford Development Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 32(3), pages 407-432.
  4. Diego Puga, 1996. "The Spread of Industry: Spatial Agglomeration in Economic Development," CEP Discussion Papers dp0279, Centre for Economic Performance, LSE.
  5. repec:idb:brikps:8551 is not listed on IDEAS
  6. Lall, Sanjaya & Albaladejo, Manuel, 2004. "China's Competitive Performance: A Threat to East Asian Manufactured Exports?," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 32(9), pages 1441-1466, September.
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