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Industrialization - a Key to Economic Development of a Country

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Words: 1090 |

Pages: 2|

6 min read

Published: Dec 18, 2018

Words: 1090|Pages: 2|6 min read

Published: Dec 18, 2018

Industrialization is a key to economic development of a country. This is true for an underdeveloped economy like India where the industrialization produces avenues for absorbing the excess manpower and also ensures availability of mass consumption goods for a vast population. The process of industrialization helps in harnessing and transforming the raw resources into useful consumer products and effective means and tools of production and in the development of infrastructure. The industrial sector possesses a relatively high marginal propensity to save and invest, contributes significantly to the achievement of a self-sustaining economy with continued high levels of investment, increase in levels of income and employment (State Industrial Profile of Jammu and Kashmir 2016).

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The transition of an economy from primarily agrarian to one based mainly on manufacturing and industry. Industrialization is generally thought to be a sign of a growing economy, and is associated with income growth, urbanization, and improvements in health, lifespan, and standard of living for the populace. Industrialization is considered to be important for the dynamics and competitiveness of every economy. Its specific uniqueness makes the sector important as an “engine of growth” (Paskal). Industrialization has played a key role to drive economic growth and the living standards for more than three centuries and even continuously playing a same crucial role in developing countries. Even India continuously is trying to build its manufacturing sector to raise the living standards and also to increase the share of manufacturing in its economy from 16 percent to 25 percent by 2022 (James Manyika et al. 2012).

Virtually every country that experienced rapid growth of productivity and living standards over the last 200 years has done so by industrializing. Countries that have successfully industrialized-turned to production of manufactures taking advantage of scale economies- are the ones that grew rich, be they eighteenth-century Britain or twentieth-century Korea and Japan. Yet despite the evident gains from industrialization and the success of many countries in achieving it, numerous other countries remain unindustrialized and poor. What is it that allows some but not other countries to industrialize? And can government intervention accelerate the process? Of the many causes of lack of growth of underdeveloped countries, a particularly important and frequently discussed constraint on industrialization is the small size of the domestic market. Domestic markets are small and world trade is not free and costless, firms may not be able to generate enough sales to make adoption of increasing returns technologies profitable, and hence industrialization is stalled (Kevin 1989).

Adam Szirmai (2009) has explained why industrialization is considered to be the engine of growth. There are powerful empirical and theoretical arguments in favor of industrialization as the main engine of growth in economic development. The arguments can be summarized as follows:

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  1. There is an empirical correlation between the degree of industrialization and per capita income in developing countries.
  2. Productivity is higher in the industrial sector than in the agricultural sector. The transfer of resources from agriculture to manufacturing provides a structural change bonus.
  3. The transfer of resources from manufacturing to services provides a structural change burden in the form of Baumol’s disease. As the share of the service sector increases, aggregate per capita growth will tend to slow down.
  4. Compared to agriculture, the manufacturing sector offers special opportunities for capital accumulation in developing countries. Capital accumulation can be more easily realized in spatially concentrated manufacturing than in spatially dispersed agriculture. This is one of the reasons why the emergence of manufacturing has been so important in growth and development. Capital intensity is high in mining, manufacturing, utilities and transport. It is much lower in agriculture and services. Capital accumulation is one of the aggregate sources of growth. Thus, an increasing share of manufacturing will contribute to aggregate growth.
  5. The manufacturing sector offers special opportunities for economies of scale, which are less available in agriculture or services.
  6. The manufacturing sector offers special opportunities for both embodied and disembodied technological progress (Cornwall, 1977). Technological advance is concentrated in the manufacturing sector and diffuses from there to other economic sectors such as the service sector
  7. Linkage and spillover effects are stronger in manufacturing than in agriculture or mining. Linkage effects refer to the direct backward and forward linkages between different sectors. Linkage effects create positive externalities to invest in given sectors and spillover effects refer to the disembodied knowledge flows between sectors. Spillover effects are a special case of externalities which to refer to externalities of investment in knowledge and technology. Linkage and spillover effects are presumed to be stronger within manufacturing than within other sectors. Linkage and spillover effects between manufacturing and other sectors such as services or agriculture are also very powerful.
  8. As per capita incomes rise, the share of agricultural expenditures in total expenditures declines and the share of expenditures on manufactured goods increase (Engel’s law). Countries specializing in agricultural and primary production will not profit from expanding world markets for manufacturing goods. These arguments are frequently mentioned in the literature and are often considered self-evident, though the recent literature increasing questions whether manufacturing will continue to be the engine of growth. We examine the empirical support for these arguments. In doing so, we may find that some of the arguments need to be qualified. They should also be considered in a temporal perspective. The applicability of different arguments may well differ in different historical contexts. The sources of growth change over time (Adam Szirmai, 2009).

It is argued that productivity is higher in the manufacturing sector than in the agricultural sector (Fei and Ranis, 1964). The transfer of resources from agriculture to manufacturing (i.e., industrialization) provides a structural change bonus. This is a temporary effect, i.e., it lasts as long as the share of manufacturing is rising. Similarly, the transfer of resources from manufacturing to services provides a structural change burden in the form of Baumol’s disease (Baumol, 1967).Next, compared to agriculture, the manufacturing sector is assumed to offer special opportunities for capital accumulation. Capital accumulation can be more easily realized in spatially concentrated manufacturing than in spatially dispersed agriculture. This is one of the reasons why the emergence of manufacturing has been so important in growth and development. Capital intensity is high not only in manufacturing but also in mining, utilities, construction and transport. It is much lower in agriculture and services. Capital accumulation is one of the aggregate sources of growth. Thus, an increasing share of manufacturing will contribute to aggregate growth. The engine of growth hypothesis implicitly argues that capital intensity in manufacturing is higher than in other sectors of the economy. However, Szirmai (2009) has shown that this is not always the case.

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Industrialization – a Key to Economic Development of a Country. (2018, December 17). GradesFixer. Retrieved June 12, 2024, from https://gradesfixer.com/free-essay-examples/industrialization-a-key-to-economic-development-of-a-country/
“Industrialization – a Key to Economic Development of a Country.” GradesFixer, 17 Dec. 2018, gradesfixer.com/free-essay-examples/industrialization-a-key-to-economic-development-of-a-country/
Industrialization – a Key to Economic Development of a Country. [online]. Available at: <https://gradesfixer.com/free-essay-examples/industrialization-a-key-to-economic-development-of-a-country/> [Accessed 12 Jun. 2024].
Industrialization – a Key to Economic Development of a Country [Internet]. GradesFixer. 2018 Dec 17 [cited 2024 Jun 12]. Available from: https://gradesfixer.com/free-essay-examples/industrialization-a-key-to-economic-development-of-a-country/
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