New international division of labour

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In economics the new international division of labor (NIDL) is an outcome of globalization. The term was coined by theorists seeking to explain the spatial shift of manufacturing industries from advanced capitalist countries to developing countries—an ongoing geographic reorganization of production, which finds its origins in ideas about a global division of labor.[1] It is a spatial division of labor which occurs when the process of production is no longer confined to national economies. Under the “old” international division of labor, until around 1970, underdeveloped areas were incorporated into the world economy principally as suppliers of minerals and agricultural commodities. However, as developing economies are merged into the world economy, more production takes place in these economies.[2]

World map showing countries above and below the median 2010 GDP (PPP) per capita, US$10,700. Source: IMF (International Monetary Fund).
Blue above world GDP (PPP) per capita
Orange below world GDP (PPP) per capita

The resultant division of labour across continents closely follows the North–South socio-economic and political divide wherein the North—with one quarter of the world population—controls four fifths of the world income[3] while the South—with three quarters of the world populations—has access to one fifth of the world income.[4]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Warf, Barney (ed.) (2010). "New International Division of Labor". Encyclopedia of Geography. Sage Pubs. ISBN 978-1412956970. 
  2. ^ UNIDO (1986) World industry: a statistical review, 1985, Industry and Development, 18: Fig. 1; UNIDO database
  3. ^ Mimiko, Oluwafemi (2012). Globalization: The Politics of Global Economic Relations and International Business. Durham, N.C.: Carolina Academic. 
  4. ^ Steger, Manfred (2009). Globalization: A Very Short Introduction. Oxford: Oxford UP.