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Policies for Industrial Learning in China and Mexico: Neo-developmental vs. Neo-liberal approaches

Author

Listed:
  • Shafaeddin, Mehdi
  • Gallaher, Kevin

Abstract

Abstract Previous work has shown that the results of both China and Mexico’s export-led market reforms over the past quarter century have been strikingly different. In contrast to China, Mexico has not managed to increase the value added of its exports of manufactured goods and has subsequently had a difficult time competing with China in world markets. Building on this previous work, in this paper we conduct a comparative analysis of the role of government policies in industrial learning and the development of capabilities of indigenous firms in Mexico and China in order to shed light on why China is so outperforming Mexico. We find that Mexico and China have had starkly different approaches to economic reform in this area. Mexico’s approach to reform has been a “neo-liberal” one, whereas China’s could be described as “neo-developmental.” Mexico’s hands-off approach to learning has resulted in a lack of development of endogenous capacity of domestic firms, little transfer of technology, negligible progress in the upgrading of industrial production, and little increase in value added of exports. By contrast, China has deployed a hands-on approach of targeting and nurturing domestic firms through a gradual and trial and error led set of government policies.

Suggested Citation

  • Shafaeddin, Mehdi & Gallaher, Kevin, 2008. "Policies for Industrial Learning in China and Mexico: Neo-developmental vs. Neo-liberal approaches," MPRA Paper 11041, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  • Handle: RePEc:pra:mprapa:11041
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    File URL: https://mpra.ub.uni-muenchen.de/11041/1/MPRA_paper_11041.pdf
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Moore, Robert E., 1997. "Learning-by-Doing and trade policy in a developing economy," MPRA Paper 10172, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    2. Manuel Agosin & Roberto Machado, 2005. "Foreign Investment in Developing Countries: Does it Crowd in Domestic Investment?," Oxford Development Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 33(2), pages 149-162.
    3. Yun-Chung Chen, 2008. "Why Do Multinational Corporations Locate Their Advanced R&D Centres in Beijing?," Journal of Development Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 44(5), pages 622-644.
    4. Gallagher, Kevin P. & Moreno-Brid, Juan Carlos & Porzecanski, Roberto, 2008. "The Dynamism of Mexican Exports: Lost in (Chinese) Translation?," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 36(8), pages 1365-1380, August.
    5. van Elkan, Rachel, 1996. "Catching up and slowing down: Learning and growth patterns in an open economy," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 41(1-2), pages 95-111, August.
    6. Bruton, H.J., 1998. "A Reconsideration of Import Substitution," Center for Development Economics 156, Department of Economics, Williams College.
    7. Shafaeddin, Mehdi & Pizarro, Juan, 2007. "From Export Promotion To Import Substitution; Comparative Experience of China and Mexico," MPRA Paper 6650, University Library of Munich, Germany, revised Oct 2007.
    8. Bell, Martin & Ross-Larson, Bruce & Westphal, Larry E., 1984. "Assessing the performance of infant industries," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 16(1-2), pages 101-128.
    9. Henry J. Bruton, 1998. "A Reconsideration of Import Substitution," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 36(2), pages 903-936, June.
    10. Lucas, Robert Jr., 1988. "On the mechanics of economic development," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 22(1), pages 3-42, July.
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    More about this item

    Keywords

    International trade; development; competitiveness; value added; government policy; assembly operations;

    JEL classification:

    • O38 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Innovation; Research and Development; Technological Change; Intellectual Property Rights - - - Government Policy
    • O25 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Development Planning and Policy - - - Industrial Policy
    • O34 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Innovation; Research and Development; Technological Change; Intellectual Property Rights - - - Intellectual Property and Intellectual Capital
    • I0 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - General
    • O32 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Innovation; Research and Development; Technological Change; Intellectual Property Rights - - - Management of Technological Innovation and R&D
    • L60 - Industrial Organization - - Industry Studies: Manufacturing - - - General
    • O14 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - Industrialization; Manufacturing and Service Industries; Choice of Technology
    • L63 - Industrial Organization - - Industry Studies: Manufacturing - - - Microelectronics; Computers; Communications Equipment
    • N65 - Economic History - - Manufacturing and Construction - - - Asia including Middle East
    • O30 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Innovation; Research and Development; Technological Change; Intellectual Property Rights - - - General
    • F10 - International Economics - - Trade - - - General
    • L52 - Industrial Organization - - Regulation and Industrial Policy - - - Industrial Policy; Sectoral Planning Methods
    • I00 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - General - - - General
    • O20 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Development Planning and Policy - - - General
    • O31 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Innovation; Research and Development; Technological Change; Intellectual Property Rights - - - Innovation and Invention: Processes and Incentives
    • P52 - Economic Systems - - Comparative Economic Systems - - - Comparative Studies of Particular Economies

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