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Chinese Electronics Export; Taiwanese Contract Manufacturing – The Win–Win Outcome along the Evolving Global Value Chain


  • We gratefully acknowledge the helpful discussion with Simone Clemhout and valuable comments from two anonymous reviewers. Also, the first author thanks the National Science Council for financial support (98-2410-H0001-033).


The ascent of China as the world’s top exporter is unusual in its rapidity andhigh–tech content, with a major portion in ‘process trade’ by Chinese classification,forming part of the evolving global value chain. With chronology andeconomic analysis applied to notions in frequent business usage, but not economicsliterature, this study shows the global value chain arose from the microelectronicrevolution known as ‘Moore’s Law’, evolved under the time-tomarketimperative, and caused widespread outsourcing in America and Europe,with final stage production mostly in China, by Taiwanese contract manufacturers.The insight gained may help to assess future trends.