There’s a historic shift happening in India, Bangladesh, and other South Asian Nations. Millions of people are rising out of poverty, and the United Nations Development Program (UNDP) reports billions more are crossing over into a new global middle class. This information comes from the 2013 Human Development Report, released last week by the UNDP in Mexico City.
The report as a whole examines more than 40 developing countries worldwide that have made considerable progress in human development. According to the UNDP, these countries’ achievements can be attributed to “strong national commitments: better public health and education services, innovative poverty eradication programs, and strategic engagement with the world economy.”
Take India, for example. Leaders opted to invest in tertiary education to build human capabilities and open the country up to international investment. By 2011 and 2012, technology industries were generating $70 billion (US) in export earnings. “Similar tales can be told for India’s pharmaceuticals, automobile, chemical, and service industries, now vigorously competing in world markets,” the UNDP reports.
Further, India offers other developing countries access to affordable capital goods that are more appropriate to their needs than goods from richer countries. According to the UNDP: “Indian firms are supplying affordable medicines, medical equipment, and information and communications technology products and services to many countries in Africa.”
Bangladesh is another astounding example of where manufacturing can lift inhabitants out of poverty. The UNDP reports that Bangladesh’s share of world apparel exports had increased to 4.8 percent in 2010, up from just 0.8 percent in 1990.
The news coming from the UNDP isn’t all good. More than half a billion people in South Asia remain extremely poor. While India has grown nearly 5 percent a year since 1990, per capita income hovered around $3,400 in 2012. “To improve living standards [India] will need to further grow,” the UNDP recommends.
Investing in supply chain professionals
The Human Development Report makes it clear developing countries reduce their poverty rates by joining the world economy. In India, for example, companies are now making pharmaceuticals, cars, chemicals, and more. To experience success in this global arena, industry leaders must invest in supply chain and operations management.
Those ideas are at the core of this association’s mission: “APICS builds and validates knowledge in supply chain and operations management. We enable our community of members, affiliates, and customers to lead in the global marketplace.”
Next month, I will be in Mumbai, India, for APICS Asia Supply Chain & Operations, April 4–5. This exciting program features sessions on risk, social media, strategy, workforce development, and more. It’s not too late to sign up. Visit apics.org/asiaconference. APICS offers a wide variety of educational opportunities to help you “lead in the global marketplace.” Go to apics.org to find out what we can do for you.