Japanese Economic Success: Industrial Policy or Free Market?

The advocacy of an "industrial policy" or a more extensive "government-business partnership" has come into vogue in recent years in the United States, particularly among political leaders. Indeed the idea that the United States must move in that direction appears to have become almost conventional wisdom in Washington. Although it is not clear precisely what an "industrial policy" might entail, or how a "business-government partnership" would benefit this country's economic growth, it is quite apparent why these ideas are so widely promoted and so favorably received. American political and business leaders believe that the prime reason for Japan's phenomenal economic growth rate and industrial success since World War II has been the Japanese government's extensive involvement in economic activities. To those who are concerned with American competitiveness in the international market, it seems logical for the U.S. government to assume a similar, major role in directing this nation's economy; in other words, to formulate an American "industrial policy."

  • Authors: Katsuro Sakoh
  • Year: 1984
  • Organisation: Cato Institute
  • Publisher: Cato Institute
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