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Growth and the Services Sector: The Portugal Case

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Author Info

  • Marta S. S. Ramos

    (University of Coimbra, Faculty of Economics)

  • Marta C. N. Simoes

    (University of Coimbra, Faculty of Economics)

Abstract

Does the increasing tertiarisation of an economy have the potential to sustain its growth rate? This work aims at contributing to this debate from a Portuguese perspective by conducting a characterization of the services sector in Portugal for the period 1970-2005/8. We first analyze the services sector as a whole, and then consider different sub-sectors based on the division of this sector into two broad categories, modern impersonal services and traditional personal services. At the aggregate level, the productivity performance of the Portuguese services sector is low relative to that of selected more advanced countries. This is due to the strong weight of traditional services. However, modern services show a great potential to increase its productivity and participation in international trade. Portugal should thus focus on the development of transport and communications and finance and business services sub-sectors in order to overcome the negative productivity and standards of living differentials relative to most of our European partners. Decisio makers should also not forget that there is ample scope for some traditional services to benefit from recent technological advances and thus turning into modern services.

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Bibliographic Info

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This chapter was published in:

  • Stefan Bogdan Salej & Dejan Eric & Srdjan Redzepagic & Ivan Stosic (ed.), 2011. "Contemporary Issues in the Integration Processes of Western Balkan Countries in the European Union," Books, Institute of Economic Sciences, number conissue, December.
    This item is provided by Institute of Economic Sciences in its series Book Chapters with number conissue-17.

    Handle: RePEc:ibg:chaptr:conissue-17

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    Related research

    Keywords: Structural change; services sector; productivity; economic growth;

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    References

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    1. Ejaz Ghani & Homi Kharas, 2010. "The Service Revolution," World Bank Other Operational Studies 10187, The World Bank.
    2. Jorgenson, D.W. & Timmer, Marcel, 2010. "Structural Change in Advanced Nations: A New Set of Stylised Facts," GGDC Research Memorandum GD-115, Groningen Growth and Development Centre, University of Groningen.
    3. Margarida Duarte & Diego Restuccia, 2006. "The Structural Transformation and Aggregate Productivity in Portugal," Working Papers tecipa-261, University of Toronto, Department of Economics.
    4. Gable, Susanna Lundstrom & Mishra, Saurabh, 2011. "Service Export sophistication and Europe's new growth model," Policy Research Working Paper Series 5793, The World Bank.
    5. Maroto-Sánchez, Andrés & Cuadrado-Roura, Juan R., 2009. "Is growth of services an obstacle to productivity growth? A comparative analysis," Structural Change and Economic Dynamics, Elsevier, vol. 20(4), pages 254-265, December.
    6. Uppenberg, Kristian & Strauss, Hubert, 2010. "Innovation and productivity growth in the EU services sector," EIB Economic Surveys, European Investment Bank, number 2.
    7. Mary O'Mahony & Marcel P. Timmer, 2009. "Output, Input and Productivity Measures at the Industry Level: The EU KLEMS Database," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 119(538), pages F374-F403, 06.
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