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Pakistan: A Case of Premature Deindustrialization?

Naved Hamid () and Maha Khan ()
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Maha Khan: Research and Teaching Fellow, Centre for Research in Economics and Business, Lahore School of Economics

Lahore Journal of Economics, 2015, vol. 20, issue Special Edition, 107-141

Abstract: While “deindustrialization” is now considered normal for developed countries, recent trends show that many developing countries have seen their share of manufacturing employment peak at far earlier levels of income than in advanced countries. This new occurrence, which blocks off the main avenue for a country to catch up with more advanced economies, has been called “premature deindustrialization.” As a result of stagnation in manufacturing since 2007, Pakistan is on the brink – if not already in the process – of premature deindustrialization. This paper focuses on (i) growth trends in manufacturing and the economy, (ii) developments in the context of premature deindustrialization in Pakistan, and (iii) the change in the country’s structure of industry. We adapt and apply the industrial sophistication index developed by Lall, Weiss, and Zhang (2005) to the Pakistan Standard Industrial Classifications in the Census of Manufacturing Industries. The structure of industry in Pakistan, Sindh, and Punjab is mapped from 1990–99 to 2005/06 (2010/11 for Punjab) on the basis of a sophistication index score. Our analysis substantiates the conclusion that Pakistan’s industrial structure has stagnated, drawing on analyses of export data in other studies. It also indicates that our finding of modest upgrading in the industry sector on the basis of an intuitive division of industries into low-technology and high-technology industries may have been too optimistic. Revitalizing manufacturing growth will require Pakistan to once again adopt a proactive industrial policy to address the constraints and weaknesses of the manufacturing sector.

Keywords: industrialization; premature deindustrialization; manufactures; manufacturing; structural change; growth; exports; sophistication of production (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: L60 O14 O25 F1 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2015
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Handle: RePEc:lje:journl:v:20:y:2015:i:sp:p:107-141