The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 71, July 1967 - April, 1968

Southwestern Historical Quarterly

not seem likely that Orozco's will be added to this select group in the
foreseeable future.
Texas Christian University DONALD E. WORCESTER
Steel and Economic Growth in Mexico. By William E. Cole. Austin
(University of Texas Press, Latin American Monographs No. 7),
1967. Pp. xviii+173. Tables, charts, appendices, bibliography,
index. $6.oo.
Until 1944 most of Mexico's small steel requirements came from
abroad; the one Mexican integrated iron and steel mill (Compafiia
Fundidora de Fierro y Acero de Monterrey, S.A.) could supply less
than half of the modest needs. Since that date, both consumption and
production have increased at a steady and sometimes startling rate,
with domestic steel accounting for well over 90 per cent of the con-
sumption in most categories, and with some types reaching the export
market. The author has dedicated himself to an examination and
explanation of both the causes and the effects of this development.
The seven-fold increase in steel production has been the result,
Cole states, of a deliberate policy by the government to stimulate the
industry through tariff barriers, import regulations, tax concessions,
direct investment (Altos Hornos, the biggest single producer, is
partially owned by the government), and indirect aid in financing.
Cole sees the development of the domestic industry as having been
beneficial to Mexican economic development in three ways, a combina-
tion of which has made the industry a "strong and integral part of
the Mexican economy" (p. 147). In the first place, each ton of do-
mestically produced steel profits Mexico about fifty dollars in foreign
exchange, which in recent years has given the country well over a
hundred million extra exchange dollars annually. Secondly, domestic
production has generally-though not universally-given the Mexican
consumer steel at a price lower than he could obtain it abroad; the
savings here have been minor, but significant. And finally, of greatest
importance, the industry through forward and backward linkages has
served as a stimulus to general Mexican economic development. Al-
though the author does not say so specifically, he strongly suggests that
the remarkable economic growth rate since 1955 could not have been
achieved without the domestic steel industry.
Through text, seventy-one tables, and twenty-one charts or figures,

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Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 71, July 1967 - April, 1968. Austin, Texas. The Portal to Texas History. http://texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth117145/. Accessed September 22, 2014.