Benchmarking Developing Asia's Manufacturing Sector

Publication | September 2007

This paper documents the transformation of developing Asia's manufacturing sector during the last 3 decades and benchmarks its share in GDP with respect to the international regression line by estimating a logistic regression.

This paper has described the changes in developing Asia’s manufacturing sector during the last 3 decades and has used a logistic regression to benchmark economies’ share of manufacturing output in gross domestic product with respect to the international regression line. Here are some of the paper's most salient conclusions:

  • The share of developing Asia in world manufacturing output has increased significantly since the 1970s. However, the increase is concentrated in a number of economies, mostly the newly industrialized economies (NIEs), the People's Repubic of China (PRC), Indonesia, Malaysia, and Thailand.
  • The NIEs have started experiencing a deindustrialization process, very clear in the case of Hong Kong, China (in terms of both output and employment shares). This is the result of maturation of this economy and the transfer of production facilities to the PRC.
  • There has been an important upgrading as the share of more technologically advanced manufactures has increased.
  • The PRC; NIEs (except Hong Kong, China); ASEAN-4 (except the Philippines); Cambodia; Lao People's Democratic Republic; Armenia; Kyrgyz Republic; Tajikistan; Fiji; and Samoa have actual manufacturing shares significantly higher than those predicted by a logistic regression that controls for income per capita, trade share, and population.
  • India is the most significant case of a country with an actual manufacturing share lower (by 4 percentage points) than what corresponds given its income per capita, trade share, and population. The actual manufacturing share of Hong Kong, China is very low due to the transfer of manufacturing activities to the PRC. The Philippines’s predicted share is very close to its actual share, but it is significantly lower than that of the other ASEAN-4 economies.

ASEAN-4 consists of the four members of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations—Indonesia, Malaysia, Philippines, and Thailand. The NIEs are Hong Kong, China; Republic of Korea; Singapore; and Taipei,China.


  • Abstract
  • Introduction
  • Structural Transformation in Developing Asia's Manufacturing Sector
  • How Large is Developing Asia's Manufacturing Sector? A Logistic Regression
  • Conclusions
  • Appendix
  • References

Additional Details

  • Economics
  • Industry and trade
  • 090907
  • 1655-5252 (Print)

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