The world economy suffered a severe shock following the rapid escalation of oil prices in the wake of the 1973 Arab oil embargo. Some of the industrial nations—particularly the United States, Japan, and West Germany, the so-called engines of the world economy—were able to withstand these shocks and, after temporary recessions, resume economic growth at near historic rates while containing inflation at moderate levels. On the other hand, many of the OECD countries have been unable to return to satisfactory economic growth rates, and the nonoil producing LDCs have experienced a mounting burden of external debt and in some cases an actual decline in real per capita net income.