Technological Convergence and International Trade
This paper builds on earlier evidence showing that, while most countries exhibit little evidence of unconditional income convergence, countries that trade heavily with one another tend to exhibit a much higher incidence of convergence. Two alternative explanations for the trade-related convergence are explored here. The first alternative is that the trade-related income convergence is due to a convergence in capital-labour ratios. Little support is found for this explanation. The other alternative examined here is that of a trade-related convergence in technologies. This alternative is corroborated by a high incidence of convergence in total factor productivities among countries that trade heavily with one another – an outcome that is not common between these same countries when they are grouped randomly rather than on the basis of trade.
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