3 Main Types of Industries: Primary, Secondary and Tertiary

The primary, secondary, and tertiary industries reflect the many types of industries in a country’s economic structure. These primary types of industries differ in terms of economic activity and income levels.

In this post, we will go through the three main types of industries in depth and learn about the key contrasts between them.

Economic activities in a primary industry are often dependent on the environment of that specific location.

A primary industry’s economic operations focus upon the utilization of the planet’s natural resources such as plants, water, minerals, earth, and so on.

Harvesting and hunting, fishing, pastoral operations, mining, agriculture, extraction, and afforestation are the primary economic activities in this business. People who work in the primary industry are sometimes referred to as red-collar employees.

The economic operations in a secondary industry center around adding value to natural resources by converting diverse raw materials into useable and profitable products.

This is accomplished through a variety of processing, manufacturing, and building industries. Employees in this field are commonly referred to as blue-collar workers.

The main economic activities of a tertiary industry are exchange and production. Production often entails the “supply” of a wide range of services that are used on a big scale by millions of customers.

When we talk about exchange, we are referring to transportation, trade, and communication services that are frequently utilized to bridge distances. Workers in this industry are commonly referred to as white-collar professionals.

Now, let’s take a closer look at the three types of industries.

1. Primary industry

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Image Credit: Getty Images

Primary industries are often extremely simple industries that involve the processing of raw materials to provide input items for secondary industries.
Value addition is typically limited, and they are typically material oriented.

The scale of operation might be modest or very huge. Coal mining and washing, oil refining, flour milling, metal smelting, stone crushing, and so on are examples.

Agriculture, forestry, fishing, mining, quarrying, and mineral exploitation are all part of a country’s economy.

Types of Primary industry

1. The genetic industry

This includes the creation of raw materials that may be enhanced by human involvement in the manufacturing process.

Agriculture, forestry, livestock management, and fisheries are all genetic industries that are vulnerable to scientific and technical advancements in renewable resources.

2. Extractive industry

This includes the extraction of finite raw resources that cannot be replenished by agriculture.

Mining for mineral ores, stone quarrying, and mineral fuel extraction are all examples of extractive industries.

Primary industry dominates the economy of emerging and underdeveloped countries, but as secondary and tertiary industries grow, primary industry’s proportion of economic production declines.

2. Secondary Industry

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Image Credit: Getty Images

Secondary industries are highly complex and diverse, taking input from primary industries and adding considerable value to it at various levels of processing.

The value enhancements are so strong that they may have a preference for market location. Secondary industries can be further subdivided into heavy industries, light industries, free-floating industries, and so on.

This business, often known as the manufacturing industry,

(1) converts raw resources given by primary industries into consumer products, or

(2) further processes commodities that have been converted into products by other secondary industries, or

(3) constructs capital items utilized in the production of consumer and non-consumer products. Secondary industry also comprises energy-producing industries (e.g., hydroelectric industries) and the building sector.

Types of Secondary Industry

The secondary industry is further subdivided into heavy industry, light industry, and footloose industries.

1. Heavy Industries

Heavy industries are distinguished by the nature of their bulky products or very large capital inputs, or by units that have a significant potential to negatively impact the environment.

Heavy chemical, heavy machinery, locomotive, shipbuilding, heavy electrical, and so on are examples.

2. Light Industries

Light industries are less capital demanding and more likely to produce consumer goods. Products are often lower in weight, consume less electricity, are less polluting, and can be set up in tiny spaces.

3. Footloose Industries

Footloose industries are ones that are mostly unconcerned about the location of their plants.

Because their products have a high value addition and are smaller in size, transportation costs are just a tiny portion of the entire cost.

These industries often demand a limited amount of manufacturing area, are less polluting, and require highly qualified personnel.

Examples include watches, cameras, diamond cutting, precise electronics, and so forth.

The plastics industry, the food industry, the home appliances business, the textile and leather industry, the entertainment and gardening sector, the personal care and beauty goods industry, and the storage and cleaning industry are all examples of secondary industries.

Light, or small-scale, industry may be distinguished by nondurability of produced items and a lower capital investment in facilities and equipment, as well as nonstandard products, such as bespoke or craft work.

Textile and garment manufacturing, food processing, and plastics manufacturing all have low skilled labor forces, whereas electronics and computer hardware manufacturing, precision instrument manufacturing, gemstone cutting, and artisan work all have highly trained labor forces.

Benefits of Secondary Industries

The following are the benefits of secondary industries:

  • Secondary industries have contributed to the creation of job possibilities. After farming, it employs the greatest number of people.
  • The completed items in our homes are the outcome of this sector’s manufacturing and production processes. These items have aided in making our lives easier.
  • Secondary industries have contributed to a country’s progress and wealth. People are more likely to pay more taxes when they have plenty. The government spends this much on the well-being of its population.
  • Industrialization is the outcome of secondary industries, and it has resulted in less imports and an increase in exports. This promotes higher income through foreign exchange, making the country more affluent.
  • Aids countries in benefiting and specializing from economies of scale.

Secondary industry disadvantages

  • The most serious consequence of secondary industries is that they have raised pollution to unfathomable levels. The toxic gas produced over time has been a key contributor to global warming.
  • Our waterways are becoming polluted by garbage items.
  • Secondary sectors typically attract employees due to job possibilities and higher compensation. Workers’ base has migrated from rural to urban regions, which can lead to issues such as a lack of appropriate housing, basic facilities, and a variety of health issues.
  • Workers choose to work in the secondary sector rather than the primary sector since the money and opportunities are greater in the secondary sector. This is causing a void that may result in a labor shortage in the agricultural industry.
  • The vast disparity between wealthy and poor is ascribed to secondary industries, which make rich people richer and poor people poorer.

Secondary industry characteristics

  • Labor and capital are both required.
  • Light industries are concentrated in cities, whereas heavy industries are concentrated outside of cities.
  • Its survival is based on basic industry.

3. Tertiary industry

Tertiary industries have nothing to do with the manufacturing process. They are mostly commerce and service industries. The operation is so vast that it is classified as an industry.

Examples include the banking and insurance industries, as well as the consulting and consulting industries.

This sector, often known as the service industry, encompasses industries that provide services or intangible gains or produce income while generating no tangible items. This sector is typically a combination of private and public activity in free market and mixed economies.

Types of Tertiary Industry

The tertiary industry is divided into numerous sub-categories. Some of the more important ones are listed below:

1. Professional services

The tertiary sector includes a variety of jobs that need specialized knowledge and training in the sciences and arts.

Some important professional services, such as auditors, architects, attorneys, engineers, and physicians, need specialized professional licenses.

Other professional services include a variety of specialized enterprises, such as a professional selling their skills to businesses such as tax consulting or IT services.

Dentists, administrators, nurses, pharmacists, and surgeons are also included in this group.

2. Telecommunications

This is a field that deals with the transmission of signs, signals, words, messages, sounds, images, or any other type of intelligence via cables, radio, electromagnetic internet, and television systems.

3. Franchises

This is the practice of providing the right to use a certain company model and brand for a set period of time.

This is an option for a specific franchise owner looking to create commercial chains for the distribution of goods. Several nations have strong rules that govern the franchising sector.

4. Public health

This particularly refers to the specialized professional field that focuses on illness prevention and helps to prolong lives and enhance human health via a variety of educated judgments and organized activities.

There are a number of commercial and governmental organizations, individuals, and groups that operate only in this field.

Wrapping Up on Types of Industries

Primary, secondary, and tertiary industries all play important roles in economic growth. They have made their fair share of contributions to the country’s GDP. As a result, none of these three sectors can be neglected under any circumstances, and every country should focus equally on all of these areas for the country’s optimal growth.

Frequent Asked Questions

What exactly are primary industries? and What are the Examples of Primary Industry?

Ans: Primary industry is described as an industry involved with obtaining natural resources from the ground in order to turn them into consumable products. It can be the extraction of natural resources such as wood, iron, coal, minerals, agriculture, and even fisheries.

Both non-renewable and renewable resources are extracted from the Earth so that the Secondary industry can make completed goods that the Tertiary industry can readily sell in the consumer market.

Agriculture, oil and gas extraction, logging and forestry, mining, fishing, and trapping are examples of primary businesses that gather or extract raw materials from nature.

What is Secondary Industry? and What are the examples of Secondary Industry?

Ans: The secondary industry is described as the industry that deals with raw materials efficiently gathered by the primary industry in order for them to be converted into completed goods. Tertiary industries then sell these finished items to the consumer market.

The industrial sector of an economy is dominated by the production and manufacture of completed goods.

  • Glass and other related products
  • Chemical manufacturing includes the production of industrial gas, petrochemical ethyl alcohol, fertilizer, synthetic dye, and pigment.
  • Mining, construction, and agriculture are all industries that use industrial machinery.
  • Production of concrete and cement
  • Coal and petroleum product manufacturing, such as asphalt shingles, refineries, petroleum, and coating materials
  • Steel and iron mills, steel product manufacture, aluminum production and processing, and ferroalloy manufacturing
  • Transportation, trailer manufacture, aerospace goods, and ship and boat construction

These are examples of secondary industries. This is the critical sector with the ability to transform global economies.

What exactly is tertiary industry, and what are some examples of it?

Ans: The tertiary industry is mostly concerned with intangible and service-oriented commodities. This industry entails the different manufacturing of services and items that may or may not be transformed into some type of final product.

The tertiary industry example is a restaurant that offers a variety of food services. Hospitals that provide healthcare services are also an important element of the tertiary industry. A tertiary industry is also financial consultants that provide financial advise.

What are the main distinctions between primary and secondary industries?

Ans: Primary industries include the extraction and manufacturing of raw resources such as coal, maize, iron, and wood.

Secondary industries involve the translation of raw and intermediate resources into various commodities, such as the use of steel in the manufacture of automobiles, the manufacturing of textiles, and so on.

How are the three industries – primary, secondary, and tertiary – dependant on one another?

Ans: The three industries – primary, secondary, and tertiary – are highly interconnected. The primary sector is mostly concerned with natural goods such as fisheries, agriculture, forestry, and dairy.

The secondary industry relies on products from the primary sector to produce more goods and services. The tertiary industry is concerned in the provision of services that market the many products produced by the primary and secondary industries.

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