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Development Accounting in a Heckscher-Ohlin World

  • Harald Fadinger
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    This paper tries to contribute to the strand of literature that investigates the question to what extend differences in per capita income between countries are due to differences in factor endowments like human- and physical capital on the one hand and due to differences in technology on the other hand. In particular, I am trying to assess to what extend structural transformation, ie the ability of a country to specialize in the production of goods that intensively use the factors with which it is abundantly endowed, has an important role in determining cross country income differences. I find that when productivities are country specific, for realistic parameter values structural transformation plays little role and productivity differences between countries remain large. However, when I allow for factor augmenting technology differences and factors are complementary in sectoral production, there seem to be large differences in the productivity of physical capital that are strongly correlated with per capita income, while human capital seems to have an inverse hump shape. This result is ad odds with Caselli (2005), who finds that poor countries use capital more efficiently than rich countries, while having a lower productivity of human capital. Finally, I use trade data and the Heckscher-Ohlin-Vanek equations to assess the plausibility of my calibrations and find a good fit for the model with factor specific productivities and complementary factors.

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    File URL: http://degit.sam.sdu.dk/papers/degit_11/C011_017.pdf
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    Paper provided by DEGIT, Dynamics, Economic Growth, and International Trade in its series DEGIT Conference Papers with number c011_017.

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    Length: 40 pages
    Date of creation: Jun 2006
    Date of revision:
    Handle: RePEc:deg:conpap:c011_017
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    1. Deardorff, A.V., 1995. "Determinants of Bilateral Trade : Does Gravity Work in a Neoclassical World?," Papers 95-05, Michigan - Center for Research on Economic & Social Theory.
    2. Trefler, Daniel, 1993. "International Factor Price Differences: Leontief Was Right!," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 101(6), pages 961-87, December.
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    14. Robert E. Hall & Charles I. Jones, 1999. "Why Do Some Countries Produce So Much More Output Per Worker Than Others?," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 114(1), pages 83-116, February.
    15. Banerjee, Abhijit V. & Duflo, Esther, 2005. "Growth Theory through the Lens of Development Economics," Handbook of Economic Growth, in: Philippe Aghion & Steven Durlauf (ed.), Handbook of Economic Growth, edition 1, volume 1, chapter 7, pages 473-552 Elsevier.
    16. Demiroglu, U. & Yun, K.K., 1997. "The Lens Conditions for factor Price Equalization," Working Papers 404, Research Seminar in International Economics, University of Michigan.
    17. Trefler, Daniel & Zhu, Susan Chun, 2010. "The structure of factor content predictions," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 82(2), pages 195-207, November.
    18. Debaere, Peter & Demiroglu, Ufuk, 2003. "On the similarity of country endowments," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 59(1), pages 101-136, January.
    19. Peter Klenow & Andrés Rodríguez-Clare, 1997. "The Neoclassical Revival in Growth Economics: Has It Gone Too Far?," NBER Chapters, in: NBER Macroeconomics Annual 1997, Volume 12, pages 73-114 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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