To have a complete idea of the country’s economy, one should have knowledge of its sectors and their contribution to the GDP. The economy of a country is composed of three main sectors – Primary Sector (agriculture and allied sector), Secondary Sector (industrial sector), and Tertiary Sector (service sector).
The primary sector, is related to natural resources of the country, in the sense that it makes use of natural resources for the production of raw materials and supplies which are used by the industries or households for consumption. On the contrary, the secondary sector encompasses construction and manufacturing activities. It aims at providing finished goods and tangible products to the customers, so as to satisfy their basic needs.
Lastly, the tertiary sector concerns all the activities which involve the provision of services to the people such as education, medical, banking, insurance, etc.
In this context, we are going to talk about the difference between primary and secondary sector.
Content: Primary Sector Vs Secondary Sector
|Basis for Comparison
|Primary Sector refers to the sector wherein the production of goods and services is done by the exploitation of natural resources.
|Secondary Sector refers to the economic sector which transforms raw materials into finished goods through a manufacturing process which has more utility.
|Traditional or Advanced Techniques
|Scientific and Modern Techniques
|Agriculture, dairy, mining, fishing, forestry, animal husbandry, pasturing, hunting and gathering, etc.
|Manufacturing, production and conversion of goods, trade and commerce, engineering, transport and communication.
|Majorly unskilled labour
|Unskilled and skilled labours
|Workers are called as
|Red collar workers
Definition of Primary Sector
Primary Sector can be defined as that economic sector which relies solely on the environment, as it covers activities concerning the use of earth’s resources like water, land, wind, vegetation, materials and minerals. Hence we can say that this sector is greatly dependent on the availability and accessibility of natural resources.
Primary Sector comprises of businesses that are engaged in the extraction and exploitation of natural resources directly as a key objective of its activities.
This may include reaping explicitly from the wild, cultivating crops, rearing domesticated animals, hunting and gathering, forestry and logging, extracting minerals and fuels from the earth or utilizing non-renewable sources of energy from the environment.
This sector is said to be the largest in terms of employment, especially in developing countries. The types of machinery used in this sector can range from light to heavy, depending on its development level. Developed economies often use advanced techniques and heavy machinery so as to increase efficiency and also to reduce the workforce employed.
Definition of Secondary Sector
The secondary sector of the country covers those economic activities that produce finished and ready to use products.
Businesses engaged in the secondary sector have ‘manufacturing’ as their core job and so they utilize the output of primary sector, as input, i.e. raw material and supplies and process the same to the extent where the output can be used by other business entities, for further processing, export or selling them to the domestic consumers or as an intermediate good which helps in the manufacturing of other product.
This sector is known for adding value to the natural resources by transforming the inputs into products which are valued by the people. It includes manufacturing, engineering and construction industry.
The industries in this sector are classified as heavy industry and light industry:
- Heavy industries encompass steelmaking, chemical and engineering works, automobile manufacturing, construction and shipbuilding, aerospace manufacturing, metalworking, oil refineries, etc.
- Light industries are the industries engaged in textile production, food production, cosmetics manufacturing and home electronics manufacturing, etc.
Key Differences Between Primary and Secondary Sector
The differences between primary and secondary sector can be drawn clearly on the following grounds:
- Primary Sector covers those activities which result in the production of goods, by extracting or utilizing the natural resources. On the contrary, the Secondary Sector covers all those activities which are related to the transformation of the natural products into various forms, through ways of manufacturing.
- The primary sector is categorized under unorganized sector, as the terms of employment are not certain and regular. As against, the secondary sector is classified under the organized sector due to the certainty and regularity in terms of employment.
- Primary Sector often uses traditional or advanced techniques depending on the development level in the economy. Conversely, scientific and modern techniques are used in the secondary sector, as it involves processing and conversion of the goods.
- Primary Sectors covers activities such as agriculture, dairy, mining and quarrying, fishing, forestry and logging, animal husbandry, pasturing, hunting and gathering, etc. On the other hand, secondary sectors include activities like Manufacturing, production, processing and conversion of goods, trade and commerce, engineering, refining, transport and communication.
- Most of the labours engaged in the primary sector are unskilled. In contrast, the secondary sector employs both unskilled and skilled labours.
- The workers working in the primary sector are red collar workers, whereas the workers working in the secondary sector are known as blue-collar workers.
So far we have discussed how the two economic sectors differ, but you should know that these are not contradictory, but complementary, due to their dependency on one another.
While farmers are dependent on the secondary sector for their equipment, fertilizers, machines, tractors etc. Similarly, large scale industries buy raw material such as cotton yarn, wood, sugarcane from the farmers, which also shows their dependency on the primary sector.