Asia's Computer Challenge: Threat or Opportunity for the United States & the World?

By Jason Dedrick; Kenneth L. Kraemer | Go to book overview

5
Asia's New Competitors

Singapore and Hong Kong

The city-states of Singapore and Hong Kong are extraordinary economic success stories and highly competitive rivals. The two have long been the leading trading centers in the region and more recently have developed strong export- oriented manufacturing sectors. These two competitors could hardly be more different, however, in economic and social ideology. Since gaining independence in 1965, Singapore has pursued a state-guided economic strategy with large state-owned enterprises controlling key sectors such as housing, petroleum refining, and the national airline. It has also pursued a paternalistic (or in Singaporean parlance, "communitarian") social policy that has created a clean, safe environment for foreign investors while cobbling together a common identity in a multicultural society. Hong Kong, by contrast, has a strong belief in laissez faire economics and an abhorrence for government intervention in the economy. 1 Singapore's careful censorship and constant campaigns to promote cleanliness and courtesy likewise contrast with Hong Kong's more open, free-wheeling environment.

The competition between Singapore and Hong Kong has been the subject of a good deal of academic debate over the merits of their different economic models. The two are in competition for foreign investment and commerce, with each hoping to be the key hubs for transport, telecommunications, and finance in Southeast Asia. Hong Kong's position as the gateway to China remains a source of competitive advantage, but Singapore's government has been more aggressive in courting multinationals, especially in manufacturing. There are probably few industries that better illustrate the contrasts between the Singapore and Hong Kong economic models than the computer industry.


Singapore

One of Singapore's most impressive economic achievements has been the creation of a large computer industry virtually from scratch in less than fifteen

-174-

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Asia's Computer Challenge: Threat or Opportunity for the United States & the World?
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Preface and Acknowledgments v
  • Contents xi
  • List of Figures xv
  • List of Tables xvii
  • 1 - Competing in Computers 3
  • 2 - Globalization of the Computer Industry 28
  • Conclusions 71
  • 3 - Japan and the PC Revolution 76
  • Summary 90
  • Summary 104
  • Conclusions 113
  • 4 - Asia's New Competitors 116
  • Conclusions 143
  • Conclusions 172
  • 5 - Asia's New Competitors 174
  • Conclusions 209
  • 6 - Findings from the East Asian Experience 211
  • 7 - Lessons for Companies and Countries 254
  • Summary 263
  • Conclusions 278
  • 8 - Competing in Computers in the Network Era 280
  • Conclusion - Asia's Computer Challenge 319
  • Appendix 321
  • Notes 325
  • References 343
  • Index 353
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