The Prospects and Limits to the Development of the Automotive Periphery

Type de publication:



Actes du Gerpisa, Comité des Constructeurs Français d'Automobiles, Volume 42, Paris (2010)


ALENA, industrie equipementière, internationalisation, MERCOSUR, Pays émergents


The papers published in this issue of Actes du GERPISA focus on the evolution of the automotive industry in the peripheral countries and their changing role in the international division of labour in the automotive industry. The first aim is to achieve a better understanding of factors and mechanisms that spur and/or hinder industrial upgrading in less developed countries as defined according to Gereffi (2005) as a ‘move from low-value to relatively high-value activities in global production networks’. This is related to the issue of the long-term prospects of the peripheral countries, i.e. the debate as to what extent their position can be sustained in the long run and how far the observed processes of functional upgrading in the international value chain can continue. These problems have gained special importance in the situation of the current crisis. One of the conclusions drawn by Humphrey, Lecler and Salerno (2000) was that a scenario of regional segmentation of the global vehicle industry was more likely than global homogeneity.
The trend towards regionalism has been supported by Freyssenet, Shimizu and Volpato (2003) and Carrillo, Lung and Van Tulder (2004). The papers in this issue discuss the development trajectories of countries that represent three different types of automotive periphery (see Humphrey, Lecler, Salerno, 2000): Mexico as an example of the Integrated Peripheral Market strongly integrated into the North American Free Trade Area (Sturgeon, Gereffi, Rogers, and Stark-Fernandez, this issue; Contreras, Carrillo, and Estrada, this issue), Mercosur as the case of the Emerging Regional Market not integrated into the Triad (Lung, this issue), and China as the best example of the Protected Autonomous Market and now the second largest automobile market behind the United States (Bungsche, this issue).

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