Global perspective Stagnant demand Increased capacity More developed countries Trading blocs Disparities within trading blocs Less developed countries Old problems for LDCs New problems for LDCs
From the Industrial Revolution’s beginnings in the late 1700s until the 1970s, industrial growth in MDCs was fueled by long-term increases in population and wealth. The growth formula was simple: More people with more wealth demanded more industrial goods. However, demand for many manufactured goods has slowed in MDCs during the past quarter century. More developed countries now have little, if any, population growth. Wages have not risen as fast as prices during the past two decades.
Fig. 11-21a: The U.S., Soviet Union, and Japan were the largest steel producers in 1980, and with the rest of Europe, accounted for 80% of global steel production.
While demand for products such as steel has stagnated during the past quarter century, global capacity to produce them has increased. Higher industrial capacity is primarily a result of two trends: the global diffusion of the Industrial Revolution and the desire by individual countries to maintain their production despite a global overcapacity. Historically, manufacturing was concentrated in a few locations. Industrial growth through increased international sales was feasible when most of the world was organized into colonies and territories controlled by MDCs. Few colonies remain in the world today, and nearly every independent country wants to establish its own industrial base.
Fig. 11-21b: About 40% of global steel production took place in MDCs in 2008, compared to 80% in 1980. Growth of steel manufacturing in China has been especially dramatic.
Fig. 11-21c: Steel production has generally declined in MDCs and increased in LDCs, especially in China, India, Brazil, and South Korea.
Countries at all levels of development face a similar challenge: to make their industries competitive in an increasingly integrated global economy. Each state faces distinctive geographical issues in ensuring that their industries compete effectively.
Industrial competition in the more developed world increasingly occurs not among individual countries, but within regional trading blocs. The three most important trading blocs are the Western Hemisphere, Western Europe, and East Asia. Within each bloc, countries cooperate in trade. Each bloc then competes against the other two.
The North American Free Trade Agreement brought Mexico into the free trade zone with the United States and Canada. The three NAFTA partners have been negotiating with other Latin American countries. The European Union has eliminated most barriers to trade through Western Europe. Cooperation among countries is less formal in East Asia, in part because Japan’s neighbors have much lower levels of economic development and unpleasant memories of Japanese military aggression during the 1930s and 1940s.
Manufacturing in Mexico has moved north to be close to the USA market Program to create jobs for Mexican farmers no longer able to make a living Assemble parts and ship the finished product back to the USA Benefit from NAFTA which has eliminated trade restrictions Example of special economic zone Region offering special tax breaks, eased restrictions, and other incentives to attract foreign business and investment
Cooperation & competition within and among trading blocs take place primarily through the actions of transnational corporations, also called multinational corporations. Initially, transnational corporations were primarily American- owned, but in recent years especially Japan, Germany, France, and the UK have been active as well. Transnational corporations locate factories in other countries to: Expand their markets. Take advantage of lower site factors to reduce their production cost (labor). Japanese transnational corporations have been especially active in the U.S. in recent years. Most plants have been located in a handful of interior states, including Ohio, Indiana, Kentucky, Michigan, Tennessee, and Illinois. German transnationals have clustered in the Carolinas.
One country or region within a country may have lower levels of income and amenities because it has less industry than other countries or regions within the trading bloc.
Europe’s most important Disparities exist at the scale of industrial areas, such as western the individual country as well. Germany and northern Italy, are relatively wealthy. Industry is concentrated in the The European Union, through its regions most accessible to European Regional Development Fund, assists its three least Western Europe’s core of industrialized member population, wealth, and countries—Greece, Ireland, and industry. Portugal—as well as regions in three other countries that lack industrial investment—Northern Germany has had a particularly Ireland (part of the United difficult problem with regional Kingdom), southern Italy, and disparities, a legacy of most of Spain. Communist-run East Germany A number of Western European (German Democratic countries use incentives to lure Republic). industry into poorer regions and discourage growth in the richer regions.
The South, historically the poorest U.S. region, has had the most rapid growth since the 1930s, stimulated partly by government policy and partly by changing site factors. The Northeast claims that development in the South has been at the expense of old industrialized communities in New England and the Great Lakes states.
Outsourcing –moving individual steps in theproduction process (of a goodor a service) to a supplier, whofocuses their production andoffers a cost savings. Offshore – Outsourced work that is located outside of the country.
Division of the manufacturing process across several countries, where in different pieces of the product are made in different countries, and then pieces are assembled in yet another country. Specialization in particular kinds of economic activities … of different people of different regions Geographic division of labor “Spatial justice” How fairly are the world’s resources distributed geographically?
High tech companies have been outsourcing many of their technical support and other tertiary jobs to India Call centers, advanced IT services, etc… In the Philippines, special electronic “enterprise zones” have been created with international telephone rates for companies specializing in telemarketing
Traditionally in large factories, each worker was assigned one specific task to perform repeatedly (assembly line). Some geographers call this approach Fordist, because the Ford Motor Company was one of the first to organize its production this way. Relatively skilled workers are needed to master the wider variety of assignments given them under more flexible post-Fordist work rules.
• The Fordist production plan was pioneered by Henry Ford and suggested that production be done in a mass assembly line.• Currently the world economy is in a post- Fordist system where goods are not mass produced and are dispersed around the globe
Fordist – dominant mode of mass production during the twentieth century, production of consumer goods at a single site.Post-Fordist – current mode of production with a more flexible set of production practices in which goods are not mass produced. Production is accelerated and dispersed around the globe by multinational companies that shift production, outsourcing it around the world.
The shipment of parts and materials to a factory immediately before they are needed. Avoids stocking expensive, unnecessary inventory allowing for smaller factories Two possible disruptions: Labor Unrest “Acts of God”
For any kind of spatial interaction to occur between two places, there must be a demand in one place and a supply that matches, or complements, it in the other. The flow of crude oil from Saudi Arabia (with vast oil reserves) t0 Japan (with none) is a function of complementarity in natural resources Knox, p. 27
Cost advantages to manufacturers that accrue from high-volume production, since the average cost of production falls with increasing output. Economies of scale are factors that cause the average cost of producing something to fall as the volume of its output increases. Hence it might cost $3,000 to produce 100 copies of a magazine but only $4,000 to produce 1,000 copies. The average cost in this case has fallen from $30 to $4 a copy because the main elements of cost in producing a magazine (editorial and design) are unrelated to the number of magazines produced. Knox, p. 28