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Raju Huidrom, Nemanja Jovanovic, Mr. Carlos Mulas-Granados, Ms. Laura Papi, Ms. Faezeh Raei, Mr. Emil Stavrev, and Mr. Philippe Wingender
Europe is deeply integrated into global value chains and recent trade tensions raise the question of how European economies would be affected by the introduction of tariffs or other trade barriers. This paper estimates the impact of trade shocks and growth spillovers using value added measures to better gauge the associated costs across European countries.
Céline Allard, Mr. Jorge I Canales Kriljenko, Mr. Jesus R Gonzalez-Garcia, Emmanouil Kitsios, Mr. Juan P Trevino, and Ms. Wenjie Chen
This analysis of the extent of trade integration of sub-Saharan African (SSA) countries in the global economy as well as within the region over the 1995–2013 period focuses on four key concepts: (1) trade openness, captured by import and export flows; (2) the centrality in the global and regional trade network, a measure that takes into account not only the size of trade but also the number of trade partners and the respective weight of these trade partners in global trade; (3) gravity model estimates that account for country- and region-specific determinants of bilateral trade flows; and (4) global value chain (GVC) integration. Using both existing data and a newly available dataset based on multiregion input and output tables, this analysis led to several findings: (1) trade openness has increased strongly; (2) integration in the global economy has made the region more vulnerable to external shocks; (3) levels of trade flows emanating from sub-Saharan Africa are still only half the magnitude of those experienced elsewhere in the world; (4) the region still has ways to go to better integrate in GVCs; and (5) it is more critical than ever to make progress in filling the infrastructure gap by lowering tariff and nontariff barriers, improving the business climate and access to credit, and continuing to enhance education outcomes.
Hang T. Banh, Mr. Philippe Wingender, and Cheikh A. Gueye
The COVID-19 pandemic has led to an unprecedented collapse in global economic activity and trade. The crisis has also highlighted the role played by global value chains (GVC), with countries facing shortages of components vital to everything from health systems to everyday household goods. Despite the vulnerabilities associated with increased interconnectedness, GVCs have also contributed to increasing productivity and long-term growth. We explore empirically the impact of GVC participation on productivity in Estonia using firm-level data from 2000 to 2016. We find that higher GVC participation at the industry level significantly boosts productivity at both the industry and the firm level. Frontier firms, large firms, and exporting firms also benefit more from GVC participation than non-frontier firms, small firms, and non-exporting firms. We also find that GVC participation of downstream industries has a negative correlation with productivity. Frontier firms and large firms benefit more from GVC participation of upstream industries, while non-frontier firms and small firms benefit more from GVC participation of downstream industries. Our results suggest that policies designed to promote participation in GVCs are important to raise aggregate productivity and potential growth in Estonia.
Miss Cigdem Akin and Mr. Ayhan Kose
This paper examines the changing nature of growth spillovers between developed economies, the North, and developing countries, the South, driven by the process of globalization?the phenomenon of rising international trade and financial flows. We use a comprehensive database of macroeconomic and sectoral variables for 106 countries over the period 1960- 2005. We consider the South to be composed of two groups of countries, the Emerging South and the Developing South, based on the extent of their integration into the global economy. Using a panel regression framework, we find that the impact of the Northern economic activity on the Emerging South has declined during the globalization period (1986-2005). In contrast, the growth linkages between the North and Developing South have been rather stable over time. Our findings also suggest that the Northern and Emerging Southern economies have started to exhibit more intensive intra-group growth spillovers.
Mr. Gee Hee Hong, Mr. Jaewoo Lee, Wei Liao, and Miss Dulani Seneviratne
Asia and China made disproportionate contributions to the slowdown of global trade growth in 2015. China’s import growth slowed starkly, driven by both external and domestic factors, including a rebalancing of demand. Econometric results point to weak investment and rebalancing as the main causes of the import slowdown. Spillover effects from China’s rebalancing are estimated for some 60 countries using value-added trade data, and are found to be more negative on Asia and commodity exporters than others.
Ms. Valerie Cerra and Mr. Jarkko Soikkeli
Ireland has had significant competitiveness gains in the 1990s on the basis of the standard manufacturing unit labor cost-based measure of the real effective exchange rate. A handful of sectors mostly dominated by multinational companies have accounted for the bulk of value added in production. Their productivity gains have greatly contributed to Ireland's exceptional growth performance in the 1990s, which has earned it the nickname of "Celtic Tiger." However, these sectors represent a disproportionately smaller share of manufacturing employment, and competitiveness in employment-intensive sectors has been much weaker. This paper thus explores Irish competitiveness from the viewpoint of risks to employment.
Gustavo Adler, Sergii Meleshchuk, and Ms. Carolina Osorio Buitron
The paper explores how international integration through global value chains shapes the working of exchange rates to induce external adjustment both in the short and medium run. The analysis indicates that greater integration into international value chains reduces the exchange rate elasticity of gross trade volumes. This result holds both in the short and medium term, pointing to the rigidity of value chains. At the same time, greater value chain integration is associated with larger gross trade flows, relative to GDP, which tends to amplify the effect of exchange rate movements. Overall, combining these two results suggests that, for most countries, integration into global value chains does not materially alter the working of exchange rates and the benefits of exchange rate flexibility in facilitating external adjustment remain.
International Monetary Fund. External Relations Dept.

The large and rising U.S. current account deficit, and the corresponding surpluses in Japan, the emerging market economies of Asia, the oil-producing countries of the Middle East, and other countries, have led to mounting concerns that these imbalances are unsustainable, and that an abrupt depreciation of the U.S. dollar may occur, with possibly disruptive effects on the global economy. Not all observers are equally concerned, however, and some have argued that today’s deep international economic and financial integration makes a benign resolution of the imbalances more likely. The Spring 2005 World Economic Outlook (WEO) takes a closer look at this controversial issue and finds that globalization can facilitate global rebalancing if investor confidence is maintained, but can increase the risk of disorderly and costly rebalancing if the adjustment is abrupt. Thomas Helbling (IMF Research Department and coauthor of the WEO study) summarizes the findings.