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Ernesto Crivelli and Mr. Sanjeev Gupta
This paper uses a newly constructed revenue dataset of 35 resource-rich countries for the period 1992-2009 to analyze the impact of expanding resource revenues on different types of domestic (non resource) tax revenues. Overall, we find a statistically significant negative relationship between resource revenues and total domestic (non resource) revenues, including for the major tax components. For each additional percentage point of GDP in resource revenues, there is a reduction in domestic (non resource) revenues of about 0.3 percentage points of GDP. We find this primarily occurs through reduced effort on taxes on goods and services—in particular, the VAT— followed by a smaller negative impact on corporate income and trade taxes.
Juan Pablo Medina Guzman and Mr. Ruy Lama
This paper evaluates how successful is a policy of exchange rate stabilization to counteract the negative effects of a Dutch Disease episode. We consider a small open economy model that incorporates nominal rigidities and a learning-by-doing externality in the tradable sector. The paper shows that leaning against an appreciated exchange rate can prevent an inefficient loss of tradable output but at the cost of generating a misallocation of resources in other sectors of the economy. The paper also finds that welfare is a decreasing function of exchange rate intervention. These results suggest that stabilizing the nominal exchange rate in response to a Dutch Disease episode is highly distortionary.
Bertrand Gruss
After skyrocketing over the past decade, commodity prices have remained stable or eased somewhat since mid-2011—and most projections suggest they are not likely to resume the upward trend observed in the last decade. This paper analyzes what this turn in the commodity price cycle may imply for output growth in Latin America and the Caribbean. The analysis suggests that growth in the years ahead for the average commodity exporter in the region could be significantly lower than during the commodity boom, even if commodity prices were to remain stable at their current still-high levels. Slower-than-expected growth in China represents a key downside risk. The results caution against trying to offset the current economic slowdown with demand-side stimulus and underscore the need for ambitious structural reforms to secure strong growth over the medium term.
Mr. Eugenio M Cerutti and Mr. Mario Mansilla
The hydrocarbons sector has become one of the most dynamic economic activities in the Bolivian economy and the main driver of improved export performance and international reserve accumulation. The central role of the hydrocarbons sector in the economy is attributable to the high levels of investment made in the late 1990s, which permitted much higher production levels, particularly of natural gas. However those positive developments in the hydrocarbons sector have given rise to the possibility of a new case of "Dutch disease." While Bolivia's economy has already seen many benefits from its higher gas exports, especially in terms of lower external vulnerability and improved fiscal stance, the new resources could also limit the development of other economic sectors in terms of output and factor income. This paper explores the transmission channels of Dutch disease, as well as its main symptom, the appreciation of the real exchange rate
Nir Klein
Recent empirical studies have shown an inverse relation between natural resource intensity and long-term growth, implying that the natural resources generally impede economic growth through various channels (the “natural resource curse”). This paper departs from these studies by exploring the intersectoral linkages between oil and non-oil sectors in a cross-country perspective. The paper shows that the applicability of “natural resource curse” across oilbased economies should be treated with caution as the externalities of the oil sector highly depend on the countries’ degree of oil-intensity. In particular, the results show that, in low oil-intensity economies, the incentives to strengthen both fiscal and private sector institutions lead to positive inter-sectoral externalities. In contrast, weaker incentives in high oil-intensity economies adversely affect fiscal and private sector institutions and consequently lead to negative inter-sectoral externalities.
Mr. Eun K Choi
This paper investigates the deindustrialization and welfare effects of infrastructure aid in developing countries. In the short run, cost-saving infrastructure aid in the export sector increases the domestic wage rate, whereas the same aid in the import sector lowers it. The cost of nontraded goods rises whether the export or the import sector receives infrastructure aid. Infrastructure aid in the nontraded sector has no effect on domestic factor prices. Laborsaving infrastructure aid causes an expansion of the export sector, while capital-saving infrastructure aid results in a Dutch disease effect in the export sector. If aid is below the optimal level, infrastructure aid increases consumer income and welfare.
Julia Faltermeier, Mr. Ruy Lama, and Juan Pablo Medina
We study the optimal foreign exchange (FX) intervention policy in response to a positive terms of trade shock and associated Dutch disease episode in a small open economy model. We find that during a Dutch disease episode tradable production drops below the socially optimal level, resulting in lower welfare under learningby- doing (LBD) externalities. FX reserves accumulation improves welfare by preventing a large appreciation of the real exchange rate and by inducing an efficient reallocation between the tradable and non-tradable sectors. For an empirically plausible parametrization of LBD externalities, the model predicts that in response to a 10 percent increase in commodity prices FX reserves should increase by 1.5 percent of GDP. We also find that the welfare gains from optimally using FX reserves are twice as high as the gains from relying only on monetary policy. These results suggest that FX intervention is a beneficial policy to counteract the loss of competitiveness during a Dutch disease episode.