Software the way of the textile industry?

Owen Byrne owen@permafrost.net
Tue, 15 Jan 2002 23:17:15 -0400


On Tue, Jan 15, 2002 at 07:25:17PM -0600, Jeff Bone wrote:
> 
> 
> Jim Whitehead wrote:
> 
> > No, the more interesting question is, given the seeming economic incentive
> > to out-source to cheaper programming sources, why has this not happened yet
> > in a significant way?
> 
> Yes, that is an interesting question, isn't it?
> 
> jb
> 
> 
From: http://idpm.man.ac.uk/idpm/isiexpt.htm

Year Software Exports (US$m) Export growth (%) 
1980 4.0  
1981 6.8 70% 
1982 13.5 99% 
1983 18.2 35% 
1984 25.3 39% 
1985 27.7 9% 
1986 38.9 40% 
1987 54.1 39% 
1988/89 (Apr-Mar) 69.7 (29%) 
1989/90 105.4 51% 
1990/91 131.2 24% 
1991/92 173.9 33% 
1992/93 219.8 26% 
1993/94 314.0 43% 
1994/95 480.9 53% 
1995/96 668.0 39% 
1996/97 997.0 49% 
1997/98 1650 65% 
1998/99 2180 32% 
1999/2000 3600 65% 
2000/01 5100 42% 

Source: Interviews, Indian Dept. of Electronics annual reports, Dataquest (India) surveys.


Note: first ever exports were recorded in 1974. 

Note: average annual growth rate for ten years from 1990/91 to 2000/01 is 42%. 

So I would say that the phenomenon is happening, just not overnight. I read an article
somewhere talking about how US companies were accelerating the outsourcing of IT (which I
would bet is a much larger number than just software) to third world countries after 
September 11. 

I don't think the textile industry disappeared overnight. I'm sure there's probably 
still some left in the US (there is in Canada).

Owen