Research 2007

The possibility of Zambia's Industrialization Strategy (Dec. 2007)

At the invitation of Japan's MoFA and JICA, I visited Zambia twice this year. My main purpose was to evaluate this country as a potential receiver of Japan's new growth effort in Africa.

Thanks to the completion of HIPC and the high copper price, Zambia is enjoying strong growth at present. But industries remain weak, the export base is not diversified, and sustainable growth is not yet secured. Top leaders are interested in long-term industrialization strategy with East Asian inputs. I gave several seminars on East Asian growth patterns and met with Vice President, economic ministers, business leaders, and factory managers.

Dr. Felix Mutati, Minister of Commerce, Trade and Industry (photo), requested me to draft a 5-page concept paper on the concrete next steps for drafting an effective industrial strategy with Japanese assistance. My paper was submitted to the minister on Dec.25, 2007. background  concept paper (please wait for clearance)

Political regime and economic development in China, India and Latin America (Jul. 2007)--I attended the IEA Roundtable Conference on the Political Economy of Sustainable Growth (Tsinghua University, Beijing, July 10-11). It was a small conference but the participants were excellent and the discussion was very good. Topics included:

-E. Asia's authoritarian developmentalism and the possibility of democratic developmentalism in Africa (my paper and slides)
-Rapid growth of India and Latin America, and potential hurdles for further development under populism
-China's decentralized development driven by provincial competition and the risks of overheating & bubbles
-China's labor market and internal migration, and the possibility of reaching the Lewis turning point

In my session, I argued that East Asia's success depended much on a particular policy combination which combined growth policies and supplementary policies (policies to cope with new social problems created by fast growth such as income gaps, pollution, urbanization, etc). To execute such policies, East Asia opted for authoritarian developmentalism. The paper explores the possibility of democratic developmentalism, a regime that can mobilize resources and implement policies quickly but preserves certain democratic features. The basic ideas of this paper partly came from my GRIPS lecture, "Policy Design and Implementation in Developing Countries."

Tsinghua Univ. in Beijing's Zhongguancun area where high-tech industries are concentrated Prof. Masahiko Aoki (Stanford Univ.) sums up the two-day discussion at the last session Ms. Xiaomeng (left) & Ms. Wu Suping of CITIC Press published the Chinese edition of my Japan book

Prof. Fujimoto meets Vietnam's Industry Minister (Jun. 2007)--Prof. Takahiro Fujimoto (Tokyo Univ) is the leading authority on business architecture theory. At the request of Mr. Hoang Trung Hai (Vietnam's Industry Minister), Prof. Fujimoto visited Vietnam on June 11, 2007 to present his theory and its implications for Vietnam. His trip was organized and funded by GRIPS Development Forum and VDF. Prof. Fujimoto gave a seminar at the Ministry of Industry where key officials, including the Minister, attended. Prof. Ohno (GRIPS) also presented at the seminar. The main policy message was that Vietnam should learn integral manufacturing, which required effective promotion of supporting industries and industrial human resources. The Minister raised questions regarding global trend in business architecture, possibility of cooperation with Japan including ODA, the way to invite retired Japanese engineers, and the recently drafted motorbike master plan. Prof. Fujimoto also visited Canon factory in Hanoi.  fujimotoE  ohnoE

Prof. Ohno, interpreter, Prof. Fujimoto            Minister Hai

Are there too many motorbikes in Vietnam? (Mar. 2007)--That is the question discussed at the motorbike symposium in Hanoi sponsored by the Vietnam Development Forum which I manage. Dr. Do Huu Hao, Vice Minister of Industry, and others gave opening speeches. I presented key remaining issues in drafting the motorbike master plan, while a Ministry of Industry official reported the draft's progress and direction. The master plan forecasts that the number of motorbikes will increase from 18 million (1 per 5 people) at present to about 33 million (3 per 5 people) by 2020. It proposes Vietnam to use motorbikes positively, for reducing car congestion and providing feeder services for proposed commuter rails, while at the same take concrete steps to reduce air pollution, traffic problems and industrial rights violation. The master plan will be finalized by end May 2007.  more   master plan draft

Two researchers join GRIPS Development Forum (Feb. 2007)--Ms. Masumi Owa (photo right), with experience in aid coordination in Uganda, and Ms. Chizuru Tobita (left), with interest in architecture and infrastructure, are joining the research team of GDF. As initial tasks, Ms. Owa has participated in ODA policy dialogue in the UK (see below), and Ms. Tobita visits Vietnam in the last week of February 2007.

UK mission for aid policy exchange (Feb. 2007)--The GRIPS Development Forum (GDF) organized a policy mission to the United Kingdom during Feb. 13-20, 2007 to report Japan's new ODA reform and industrial policy vision to the UK side, and to hear about new initiatives in the UK aid circle. Izumi Ohno, Kenichi Ohno, Masumi Shimamura and Masumi Owa were mission members, and Nobuyuki Hashimoto joined the mission in London. We visited the Department for International Development (DfID), Overseas Development Institute (ODI, a powerful ODA think tank), Crown Agents (an implementing body of ODA), Sussex University, Oxford University, and School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS) of London University. We also attended the speech by Hilary Benn, DfID Minister. UK officials and researchers were keenly interested in Japan's ODA reform, China's ODA drive in Africa, and East Asian industrial policy and authoritarian regimes. DfID and ODI in particular are trying to operationalize governance concern (corruption, transparency, democracy, etc), a new trend in global ODA, by creating new indices of governance for each country.

The mission was part of GDF's effort to learn from foreign experience for revitalizing Japan's ODA, and to develop strategic relations with the UK. While GRIPS is an academic institution, it is working closely with Japanese aid ministries and agencies. MoFA and JICA are approaching GRIPS for further cooperation.

Motorcycle master plan in Vietnam (Feb. 2007)--Since early 2006, the Vietnam Development Forum (VDF), a joint project between GRIPS and Hanoi's National Economics University, is acting as a central coordinator of the drafting process of the master plan for the motorcycle industry with major producers (Honda, Yamaha, Suzuki) and Vietnam's Ministry of Industry. We are trying to improve dialogue with the business community and inter-ministerial coordination, both of which are lacking in Vietnam's current drafting procedure. The Joint Working Group (JWG) has conducted a supplier survey, held dozens of internal discussion, organized producers' hearings in Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City, and mobilized Japanese experts in urban planning, traffic control, supporting industries, environment and intellectual property. JWG is now launching a consumer survey on the future of motorcycles in Vietnam. This new interactive method is highly appreciated by Industry Minister Hoang Trung Hai as well as Industry Vice Minister Do Huu Hao. The final draft is expected by end May 2007. JWG's activities are listed in this website.