Supplier Networks and Aircraft Production @in Wartime Japan
The Japanese aircraft industry, which was of very small scale before World War II, became Japan fs largest manufacturing industry by the end of the war. In this paper, we explore the basis for the growth of the aircraft industry during this time by focusing on the No. 5 Works of Mitsubishi Heavy Industries Co. It was revealed that during the war, the supply of basic inputs increased substantially: the labor force and gmachinery parts h were in sufficient supply and neither was a binding constraint on production. The binding constraint existed in the supply of gspecial parts. h Put differently, aircraft production expanded as the supply of special parts increased. This increase in the supply of special parts and still faster growth in the supply of machinery parts came about through the expansion of the supplier network in terms of both the number of suppliers and the geographical area in which they were located.
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