East Asian Tigers Essay

2077 Words Nov 14th, 2006 9 Pages
Krista Bruns
SSC 141a
Assignment 3
British English

Can one tame a tiger?

- The extensive growth of South East Asian Economies -


A tiger economy is a name given to a region or country which undergoes a heavy and fast economic growth. This usually also leads to rising living standards. This term was first applied to South Korea, Singapore, Hong Kong and Taiwan. Since the 1960's, these four countries are known as the East Asian Tigers. Later on more Tiger Economies emerged, but this essay will focus mainly on the first four. Even though the countries do not share their borders, together they can be considered as an economic region, for they share a lot of characteristic and they have gone to similar
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These activities take place in what is called the tertiary and quaternary economic sectors. Singapore and Hong Kong, for example, are gateways between the demanding Europe and the producing Third World countries. Furthermore, the Tiger economies produce high technological goods. An example of this is Samsung in South Korea. The agricultural sector is only a very small part of the Tigers' annual production, so agricultural goods often have to be imported. The East Asian Tigers mainly trade with the US and Europe, but also the mainland China plays an important role. They have a quite large trade surplus with these richer, Western countries which leads to a low valued currency and high saving rates. Almost all companies that have settled in these South East Asian countries are part of transnational corporations. They produce large scale yet specialized products.

In these two graphs about the situation in Taiwan and Korea can be seen that while working hours per person per week were decreasing, wages were rising the last couple of decades. This made it necessary for the Tigers to outsource their low-skilled labour in order to maintain competitive.

Since the first signs of growth were shown to the world, round the mid-1960's, East Asian and other Third World countries have increasingly become important destinations for Foreign Direct Investment. This FDI has played a great role in the development of the countries. However, scholars argue that some

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