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The economics of korean unification


  • Marcus Noland
  • Sherman Robinson
  • Ligang Liu


We simulate the impact of a customs union and an exchange rate unification of North and South Korea. Factor mobility and technological change are of critical importance. If factor markets do not integrate, the macroeconomic impact on South Korea of economic integration is relatively small, while the effects on North Korea are large. With factor market integration, there is a significant impact on the South Korean income and wealth distribution. If integration is accompanied by external capital inflows, there is a significnt appreciation of the real exchange rate with deleterious implications for the South Korean traded-goods sector.

Suggested Citation

  • Marcus Noland & Sherman Robinson & Ligang Liu, 1999. "The economics of korean unification," Journal of Economic Policy Reform, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 3(3), pages 255-299.
  • Handle: RePEc:taf:jpolrf:v:3:y:1999:i:3:p:255-299 DOI: 10.1080/13841289908523406

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Hughes Hallett, A. & Ma, Y. & Melitz, J., 1996. "Unification and the policy predicament in Germany," Economic Modelling, Elsevier, vol. 13(4), pages 519-544, October.
    2. Marcus Noland, 1996. "German Lessons for Korea: The Economics of Unification," Working Paper Series WP96-3, Peterson Institute for International Economics.
    3. Marcus Noland & Sherman Robinson & Li-Gang Liu, 1998. "The Costs and Benefits of Korean Unification," Working Paper Series WP98-1, Peterson Institute for International Economics.
    4. Hans-Werner Sinn, 1995. "Staggering along: wages policy and investment support in East Germany," The Economics of Transition, The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, vol. 3(4), pages 403-426, December.
    5. Bernhard Herz & Werner Roger, 1995. "Economic growth and convergence in Germany," Review of World Economics (Weltwirtschaftliches Archiv), Springer;Institut für Weltwirtschaft (Kiel Institute for the World Economy), vol. 131(1), pages 132-143, March.
    6. Deaton,Angus & Muellbauer,John, 1980. "Economics and Consumer Behavior," Cambridge Books, Cambridge University Press, number 9780521296762, March.
    7. Andrea Boltho & Wendy Carlin & Pasquale Scaramozzino, 1999. "Will East Germany become a new Mezzogiorno?," Chapters,in: Economic Growth and Change, chapter 13 Edward Elgar Publishing.
    8. Golan, Amos & Judge, George & Robinson, Sherman, 1994. "Recovering Information from Incomplete or Partial Multisectoral Economic Data," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 76(3), pages 541-549, August.
    9. Stone, Richard, 1986. "Nobel Memorial Lecture 1984: The Accounts of Society," Journal of Applied Econometrics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 1(1), pages 5-28, January.
    10. Christian Thimann & Michael Breitner, 1995. "Eastern Germany and the conflict between wage adjustment, investment, and employment: A numerical analysis," Review of World Economics (Weltwirtschaftliches Archiv), Springer;Institut für Weltwirtschaft (Kiel Institute for the World Economy), vol. 131(3), pages 446-469, September.
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    Cited by:

    1. Noland, Marcus & Robinson, Sherman & Wang, Tao, 2001. "Famine in North Korea: Causes and Cures," Economic Development and Cultural Change, University of Chicago Press, vol. 49(4), pages 741-767, July.
    2. Noland, Marcus & Robinson, Sherman & Wang, Tao, 2000. "Modeling Korean Unification," Journal of Comparative Economics, Elsevier, vol. 28(2), pages 400-421, June.
    3. Ruiz Estrada, Mario Arturo & Park, Donghyun, 2008. "Korean unification: How painful and how costly," Journal of Policy Modeling, Elsevier, vol. 30(1), pages 87-100.
    4. Bradford, Scott C. & Phillips, Kerk L., 2008. "The Economic Reunification of Korea: A Dynamic General Equilibrium Model," MPRA Paper 23550, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    5. Paul Hare, 2012. "North Korea: Building the Institutions to Raise Living Standards," International Economic Journal, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 26(3), pages 487-509, September.
    6. Bernhard Heitger, 2001. "Minimum Wages And Employment: The Case Of German Unification," International Economic Journal, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 17(1), pages 1-15.
    7. Noland, Marcus & Robinson, Sherman & Wang, Tao, 2000. "Rigorous Speculation: The Collapse and Revival of the North Korean Economy," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 28(10), pages 1767-1787, October.


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