University of Cambridge > Talks.cam > Centre of South Asian Studies Seminars > Middle-income trap or uneven and dependent inclusion in the East Asian Productive order? the case of Vietnam AND Factory work, dormitory regimes and the making of a transient workforce under FDI-led industrialization in Vietnam: the case of Thang Long Ind

Middle-income trap or uneven and dependent inclusion in the East Asian Productive order? the case of Vietnam AND Factory work, dormitory regimes and the making of a transient workforce under FDI-led industrialization in Vietnam: the case of Thang Long Ind

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2 speakers with 2 separate titles. To be chaired by Dr Tim Harper

Southeast Asia has been suggested to have fallen into a so-called Middle-income trap, on the one hand, suffering the competition of countries with lower labor costs and, on the other hand, unable to climb the value chain to more value-adding productions. The presentation will argue that current obstacles for more mature and independent industrial development are rooted in the modalities of integration of Southeast Asia in the regional division of labor, resulting in a condition of dependent and uneven development. The case of Vietnam, with high levels of FDI attraction and scarce backward and forward linkages with national industry, is highly illustrative of this dependent model of industrial development, resulting – like in Malaysia, Thailand and Indonesia – in labor-unfriendly regimes. AND Basing on the case-study of Thang Long Industrial Park (Hanoi) the presentation attempts to detail empirically and grasp theoretically how a series of devises, both within and outside the factory gate, including a specific dormitory regime, are part of a coherent whole that makes the Vietnamese migrant workforce circulatory and structurally vulnerable and transient. Light is shed on some major flaws of the pro-FDI consensus prevailing in Vietnam, including the understanding of FDI -led industrialization as a major driver of the country’s rural to Industrial transition, urbanization, and poor people’s exit from poverty.

This talk is part of the Centre of South Asian Studies Seminars series.

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