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Command Economy after the Shocks of Opening up: The Factors of Adjustment and Specialisation in the Czech Trade

This analysis focuses on factors determining the transition of international trade in the Czech economy. Even though the Czech economy was exposed to several structural shocks during 1993–2002 and grew at a very low rate, its external trade flows sustained an annual growth at around 10%. The restructuring in the pattern of specialisation with the EU-15 was exceptionally intensive and our results confirm that its progress can be explained by the variables used in the theories of open economies. The undergoing changes were profound and painful, but their positive final outcome is undisputable. In the econometric part of this study we quantify the determining factors of Czech exports and imports during 1993–2002 when the trade flows have undergone intensive structural and qualitative changes facilitating the trade creation. Our findings lend significance to the variables of aggregate demand and the real exchange rate, in addition to liberalisation of tariffs, evolution of unit prices of exports and imports, changes in quality, diversion in factor usage and economies of scale. Unimpeded opening-up can be a crucial driver of an in-depth restructuring, which brings positive results from the very start, even though its spillovers into an overall fast growth can be delayed.

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Paper provided by Charles University Prague, Faculty of Social Sciences, Institute of Economic Studies in its series Working Papers IES with number 2006/20.

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Length: 19 pages
Date of creation: Apr 2006
Date of revision: Apr 2006
Handle: RePEc:fau:wpaper:wp2006_20
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  1. Andrei Medvedev & Alena Zemplinerová, 2005. "Does Competition Improve Performance? Evidence from the Czech Manufacturing Industries," Prague Economic Papers, University of Economics, Prague, vol. 2005(4), pages 317-330.
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  9. Lionel Fontagné & Michaël Freudenberg, 1997. "Intra-Industry Trade: Methodological Issues Reconsidered," Working Papers 1997-01, CEPII research center.
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  13. repec:nsr:niesrd:71 is not listed on IDEAS
  14. Michael A. Landesmann & Robert Stehrer, 2002. "Evolving Competitiveness of CEEC’s in an Enlarged Europe," Rivista di Politica Economica, SIPI Spa, vol. 92(1), pages 23-88, January-F.
  15. Iraj Hashi & Darko Hajdukovic & Erjon Luci, 2005. "Can Government Policy Influence Industrial Competitiveness: Evidence from Poland and the Czech Republic," Zagreb International Review of Economics and Business, Faculty of Economics and Business, University of Zagreb, vol. 8(2), pages 1-22, November.
  16. Uwe Dulleck & Neil Foster & Robert Stehrer & Julia Woerz, 2005. "Dimensions of quality upgrading," The Economics of Transition, The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, vol. 13(1), pages 51-76, 01.
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