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Productivity, Efficiency and Economic Growth: East Asia and the Rest of the World

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  • Han, Gaofeng
  • Kalirajan, Kaliappa
  • Singh, Nirvikar

Abstract

This study compares the sources of growth in East Asia with the rest of the world, using a methodology that allows one to decompose total factor productivity (TFP) growth into technical efficiency changes (catching up) and technological progress. It applies a varying coefficients frontier production function model to aggregate data for the period 1970-1990, for a sample of 45 developed and developing countries. Our results are consistent with the view that East Asian economies were not outliers in terms of TFP growth. Of the high-performing East Asian economies, our methodology identifies South Korea as having the highest TFP growth, followed by Singapore, Taiwan and Japan. Our methodology also allows us to separately estimate technical efficiency change, which is a component of TFP growth, and we find that, in general, the estimated technical efficiency of the high-performing East Asian economies was not out of line with the rest of the world.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Department of Economics, UC Santa Cruz in its series Santa Cruz Department of Economics, Working Paper Series with number qt16z7s028.

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Date of creation: 01 Mar 2003
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Handle: RePEc:cdl:ucscec:qt16z7s028

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Keywords: Total factor productivity growth; technical efficiency change; technical progress; sources of growth; varying coefficients frontier production functions;

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  1. Sonobe, Tetsushi & Otsuka, Keijiro, 2001. "A new decomposition approach to growth accounting: derivation of the formula and its application to prewar Japan," Japan and the World Economy, Elsevier, vol. 13(1), pages 1-14, January.
  2. Alwyn Young, 1992. "A Tale of Two Cities: Factor Accumulation and Technical Change in Hong Kong and Singapore," NBER Chapters, in: NBER Macroeconomics Annual 1992, Volume 7, pages 13-64 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  3. Hayami, Yujiro & Ogasawara, Junichi, 1999. "Changes in the Sources of Modern Economic Growth: Japan Compared with the United States," Journal of the Japanese and International Economies, Elsevier, vol. 13(1), pages 1-21, March.
  4. Hughes, Helen, 1995. "Why Have East Asian Countries Led Economic Development?," The Economic Record, The Economic Society of Australia, vol. 71(212), pages 88-104, March.
  5. K.P. Kalirajan & M.B. Obwona & S. Zhao, 1996. "A Decomposition of Total Factor Productivity Growth: The Case of Chinese Agricultural Growth before and after Reforms," American Journal of Agricultural Economics, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 78(2), pages 331-338.
  6. Mahadevan, Renuka & Kalirajan, Kali, 2000. "Singapore's Manufacturing Sector's TFP Growth: A Decomposition Analysis," Journal of Comparative Economics, Elsevier, vol. 28(4), pages 828-839, December.
  7. Kalirajan, K P & Obwona, M B, 1994. "Frontier Production Function: The Stochastic Coefficients Approach," Oxford Bulletin of Economics and Statistics, Department of Economics, University of Oxford, vol. 56(1), pages 87-96, February.
  8. Robert J. Barro, 2013. "Inflation and Economic Growth," Annals of Economics and Finance, Society for AEF, vol. 14(1), pages 121-144, May.
  9. Jesus Felipe, 1999. "Total factor productivity growth in East Asia: A critical survey," Journal of Development Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 35(4), pages 1-41.
  10. Kim Jong-Il & Lau Lawrence J., 1994. "The Sources of Economic Growth of the East Asian Newly Industrialized Countries," Journal of the Japanese and International Economies, Elsevier, vol. 8(3), pages 235-271, September.
  11. Aigner, Dennis & Lovell, C. A. Knox & Schmidt, Peter, 1977. "Formulation and estimation of stochastic frontier production function models," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 6(1), pages 21-37, July.
  12. Meeusen, Wim & van den Broeck, Julien, 1977. "Efficiency Estimation from Cobb-Douglas Production Functions with Composed Error," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 18(2), pages 435-44, June.
  13. Stanley Fischer, 1993. "The Role of Macroeconomic Factors in Growth," NBER Working Papers 4565, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  14. Young, Alwyn, 1994. "Lessons from the East Asian NICS: A contrarian view," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 38(3-4), pages 964-973, April.
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