Discussion Papers

No.419 Exploring the Sources of China’s Challenge to Japan: Models of Industrial Organisation in the Motorcycle Industry


June 2013


In view of the recent rise of China, this paper looks into one of the most important yet relatively overlooked ingredients of the Chinese success: industrial organisation. It will examine the case of the motorcycle industry, in which the rise of Chinese manufacturers even disrupted the established dominance of Japanese industry leaders. Adopting the modified version of the global value chain governance framework, this paper shows that the rise of China has been driven by a distinctive arm’s-length model of industrial organisation, which is in sharp contrast to the conventional captive model that has sustained the Japanese leadership.

Keywords: industrial organisation, model, China, Japan, motorcycle industry
JEL classification: L10, L22, L62

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