Spatial aspects of imports substitution : the case study of the Textile and Clothing industry in Livingstone, Zambia
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As the policy of Import Substitution emphasises the utilisation of local raw material inputs, the strategy is expected to have spatial influence on the distribution of manufacturing industries. Since long links between supporting plants adversely affected profitability levels, manufacturing plants should be located closer to their main supplier of raw material inputs (backward linkage) and their markets (forward linkage). Out of the total number of Textile and clothing factories in Zambia, approximately 25 per cent are located in Livingstone despite its small market relative to other towns (Harkema, 1972; C.S.O, 1983). The aims of the study therefore were to examine the spatial implications of the policy of Import Substitution pertaining to the Textile and Clothing industry and the concentration of the subsector in Livingstone. The major objectives of the study were to determine the main source(s) of the raw material inputs for the Textile and Clothing industry in Livingstone and the major market(s) for the products of the industry. The third objective was to investigate why there is a high concentration of the industry in Livingstone. The data were collected from 31 plants in Livingstone through the use of questionnaires and interviews. Additional information was collected from the Ministry of Commerce and Industry and the University of Zambia Library. Z-test for proportions and t-test for paired observations were employed to analyse the data. The findings have shown that there are five sources of raw material inputs of the Textile and Clothing plants in Livingstone viz: Livingstone, Kafue, Lusaka, Ndola and outside the country. However, Livingstone has been identified to be the major source for most of the factories whereas the major market(s) for the products from the factories is outside Livingstone. The implication of the above findings is that backward linkages are more important than forward linkages as far as the Textile and Clothing plants in Livingstone are concerned. Although historical factors are said to have been important for the initial location of the plants in Livingstone the continued expansion of the industry in the town is attributable mainly to availability of raw material inputs and semi-skilled labour in Livingstone.
- Natural Sciences