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Inclusive DualismLabour-intensive Development, Decent Work, and Surplus Labour in Southern Africa$
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Nicoli Nattrass and Jeremy Seekings

Print publication date: 2019

Print ISBN-13: 9780198841463

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: July 2019

DOI: 10.1093/oso/9780198841463.001.0001

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Trajectories of Development and the Global Clothing Industry

Trajectories of Development and the Global Clothing Industry

(p.54) 4 Trajectories of Development and the Global Clothing Industry
Inclusive Dualism

Nicoli Nattrass

Jeremy Seekings

Oxford University Press

Chapter 4 provides a history and analysis of development trajectories in the global clothing industry. Trade liberalization (specifically the end of import quotas from January 2005) and the rise of global value chains have changed the nature of the global economy since Lewis’s time. We use UNIDO data on remuneration, output, and employment to identify post-2004 national development trajectories showing that upgrading trajectories can be pro-labour (a rising wage share of value-added) or pro-capital (a rising profit share). Pro-labour trajectories can deliver rising average wages and employment (e.g. India and China) or higher average wages for fewer workers (e.g. Sri Lanka). Pro-capital trajectories can also deliver higher average wages and employment growth (e.g. Vietnam) or rising wages for fewer workers (e.g. South Africa). Downgrading trajectories are typically associated with falling average wages but can be associated with rising average wages (as in Turkey). The desirability of a particular development trajectory depends on the economic context, especially labour market conditions.

Keywords:   upgrading, downgrading, clothing industry, wages and employment, global value chains

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