Tagged: Productivity

New publications from OECD, mid December 2015

New OECD publications have been uploaded to the OECD iLibrary, a comprehensive digital repository of books, papers, and statistics from the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD). Titles recently added include:

These volumes and more are accessible from the OECD iLibrary by WTO staff and WTO Library patrons.

Trade liberalisation and innovation under sector heterogeneity

Mark-ups and the degree of trade openness vary substantially across sectors. This paper builds a multi-sector endogenous growth model to study the influence of trade liberalisation on innovation and, by extension, on sector and aggregate productivity growth under sectoral heterogeneity.

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Trade, import competition and productivity growth in the food industry

Melitz and Ottaviano’s (2008) firm-heterogeneity model predicts that trade liberalization induces a selection process from low to high productivity firms, which translates to an industry productivity growth. A similar firms’ selection effect is induced by market size. In this paper, these predictions are tested across 25 European countries and 9 food industries, over the 1995–2008 period. Using different dynamic panel estimators we find strong support for the model predictions, namely that an increase in import penetration is systematically positively related to productivity growth. The results are robust to measurement issues in productivity, controlling for market size, country and sector heterogeneities, and for the endogeneity of import competition. Interestingly, this positive relationship is almost exclusively driven by competition in final products coming from developed (especially EU-15) countries suggesting that EU food imports are closer substitutes for domestic production than non-EU imports. These results have some potentially interesting policy implications.

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Food security policy options for China

As China becomes more industrial and urbanized, it is likely to become more dependent over time on imports of (especially land-intensive) farm products, most notably livestock feedstuffs. If farmers are slow to adjust to their declining competitiveness, for example by obtaining off-farm employment, the farm–nonfarm household income gap may increase. A decline in food self-sufficiency may be perceived as undermining national food security, and a persistent farm–nonfarm income gap as contributing to social unrest. In these circumstances, what offsetting or compensating policy options should the government consider for ensuring adequate long-term food security and less income inequality? This paper evaluates China’s historical record since 1980 and then projects China’s economy to 2030, using the GTAP global economy-wide model. It draws on past policy experiences of both China and other economies to evaluate prospective interventions by government to address food security and income inequality concerns. The potential effects of some of those are estimated for 2030, again using the GTAP model. The paper concludes by suggesting alternative ways to achieve the fundamental objectives of national food security and less rural–urban income inequality, namely via generic social safety nets and improved rural infrastructure.

Full-text available in .pdf

Productivity Growth of the Nontradable Sectors in China

Little is known about the total factor productivity of the nontradable sectors in China. In this paper we estimate productivity growth of the nontradable sectors by studying the relative price movements of the nontradable sectors vis-Ă -vis the tradable sectors, i.e. changes in the internal real exchange rate. We find that prices of the nontradable sectors have risen significantly faster than those of the tradable sectors since China’s accession to the WTO, and as a result China’s internal real exchange rate has appreciated faster than the renminbi real effective exchange rate. We also find that the nontradable sectors have seen much lower productivity growth than the tradable sectors. We argue that it is important to raise China’s productivity growth in the nontradable sectors through policy actions to achieve growth rebalancing and containing inflationary pressures in the medium run.

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Effects of knowledge capital on total factor productivity in China: A spatial econometric perspective

The transformation of China into a knowledge based economy is one of the most intensively debated research issues in Economic Geography. The focus of this study is on effects of knowledge capital on manufacturing total factor productivity (TFP) in China through the lens of the regional knowledge capital model (KCM). The objective is to estimate the impact of region-internal and region-external knowledge capital — measured in terms of patents granted by the Chinese patent office — on TFP across Chinese regions. We derive a Spatial Durbin Model (SDM) for empirical testing, using panel data on 29 Chinese regions for the years 1988–2007. The results indeed point to a shift of Chinese productivity growth to a more knowledge based one, statistically confirming the impact of knowledge capital on regional TFP after 1998. Furthermore, this shift is not only based on region-internal knowledge capital, but also on inter-regional knowledge spillovers.

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Assessing the Trade-Related Sources of Productivity Growth in Emerging Economies / Przemyslaw Kowalski and Max BĂĽge

This paper contributes new empirical evidence on the relationship between productivity and international trade. This is accomplished using an econometric approach that combines input-output and productivity data, which allows a more detailed tracking of the relationship between trade in intermediate and final products and productivity in countries at different stages of economic development. The results show that various forms of trade integration strongly support productivity in emerging economies. Exporting final products, importing intermediates for domestic production and re-exporting are all associated with higher productivity levels, pointing to the particular importance for this country grouping of being able to integrate into regional and global value chains. Our results emphasise also important linkages between different economic sectors and call for broad-based approaches to facilitating integration with foreign intermediate inputs and final products markets.

Full-text available in .pdf format