ABSTRACT

This chapter introduces the catch-up industrialization theory. Most developing countries pursue this path to enhance industrialization and take advantage of backwardness to attain the level of, and leapfrog, developed countries. It discusses the flying-geese pattern of development, an East Asian national phenomenon in which Japan is pursued as a leading goose. Despite this theory’s limitations, it has been propounded again after the rise of China, along with disadvantages of backwardness derived from early adoption of frontier technologies despite late development in the era of globalization.To join the rank of high-income countries, Thailand must achieve structural change by reallocating capital and labour across sectors with different productivity levels, to create more quality jobs and overcome rising inequality. The first concept to address is the importance of manufacturing as hub of innovation and main source for rising productivity. Industrialization positively affects distribution by creating jobs in manufacturing and related sectors, thereby eradicating poverty. Each sector, agriculture (Dutch disease and reprimatization of exports), manufacturing (deindustrialization and national innovation system), and services (from labour-intensive sectors to the digital economy), requires separate examination.