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Offshoring, Outsourcing, and Production Relocation—Labor-Market Effects in the OECD Countries and Developing Asia

  • Jacob Funk Kirkegaard


    (Peterson Institute for International Economics)

This working paper evaluates the validity of available data on and the extent of the impact of offshoring on service-sector labor markets in the United States, EU-15, and Japan. A three-tier data validity hierarchy is identified. The impact of offshoring on employment in the three regions is found to be limited. Correspondingly, developing Asia is unlikely to experience large employment gains as a destination region. The paper highlights the case of the Indian IT industry, where the majority of job creation has been in local Indian companies rather than foreign multinationals. Domestic entrepreneurs have played a crucial role in the growth of the Indian IT-related service industry. However, increased tradability of services and associated skill bias in favor of higher skilled workers could have an uneven employment impact on developing Asia. Some high-skilled groups are benefiting and will continue to benefit dramatically from new employment opportunities and rising wage levels. Meanwhile, the same skill bias may eliminate many employment opportunities for unskilled or low-skilled groups in the region. Developing Asian countries therefore face a double educational challenge in the coming years: the need to simultaneously improve both primary aCreation-Date: 2006-06

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Paper provided by Peterson Institute for International Economics in its series Working Paper Series with number WP07-2.

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Date of creation: Apr 2007
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:iie:wpaper:wp07-2
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  1. David H. Autor & Lawrence F. Katz & Alan B. Krueger, 1998. "Computing Inequality: Have Computers Changed The Labor Market?," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 113(4), pages 1169-1213, November.
  2. Falk, Martin & Koebel, Bertrand, 2003. "The Impact of Office Machinery and Computer Capital on the Demand for Heterogeneous Labour," IZA Discussion Papers 873, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  3. Bardhan, Ashok Deo & Kroll, Cynthia, 2003. "The New Wave of Outsourcing," Fisher Center for Real Estate & Urban Economics, Research Reports qt02f8z392, Fisher Center for Real Estate & Urban Economics, UC Berkeley.
  4. David Autor & Frank Levy & Richard Murnane, 2003. "The skill content of recent technological change: an empirical exploration," Proceedings, Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco, issue Nov.
  5. WTO Economic Research and Analysis Division, 2001. "Market Access: Unfinished Business - Post Uruguay Round Inventory and Issues," WTO Special Studies, World Trade Organization (WTO), Economic Research and Statistics Division, volume 6, number 6.
  6. Mary Amiti & Shang-Jin Wei, 2004. "Fear of Service Outsourcing: Is It Justified?," IMF Working Papers 04/186, International Monetary Fund.
  7. repec:dgr:rugggd:200575 is not listed on IDEAS
  8. Catherine L. Mann & Jacob Funk Kirkegaard, 2006. "Accelerating the Globalization of America: The Role for Information Technology," Peterson Institute Press: All Books, Peterson Institute for International Economics, number 3900.
  9. Martin Feldstein, 1994. "The Effects of Outbound Foreign Direct Investment on the Domestic Capital Stock," NBER Working Papers 4668, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  10. Robert C. Feenstra, . "Integration Of Trade And Disintegration Of Production In The Global Economy," Department of Economics 98-06, California Davis - Department of Economics.
  11. C. Alan Garner, 2004. "Offshoring in the service sector : economic impact and policy issues," Economic Review, Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City, issue Q III, pages 5-37.
  12. Mihir A. Desai & C. Fritz Foley & James R. Hines Jr., 2005. "Foreign Direct Investment and the Domestic Capital Stock," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 95(2), pages 33-38, May.
  13. William J. Zeile, 2003. "Trade in Goods Within Multinational Companies: Survey-Based Data and Findings for the United States of America," BEA Papers 0033, Bureau of Economic Analysis.
  14. Jagdish Bhagwati & Arvind Panagariya & T. N. Srinivasan, 2004. "The Muddles over Outsourcing," International Trade 0408004, EconWPA.
  15. Aaditya Mattoo & Sacha Wunsch-Vincent, 2004. "Pre-Empting Protectionism in Services: The GATS and Outsourcing," Journal of International Economic Law, Oxford University Press, vol. 7(4), pages 765-800, December.
  16. Richard B. Freeman, 2006. "Labor market imbalances: shortages, or surpluses, or fish stories?," Conference Series ; [Proceedings], Federal Reserve Bank of Boston, vol. 51.
  17. Jacob Funk Kirkegaard, 2005. "Outsourcing and Skill Imports: Foreign High-Skilled Workers on H-1B and L-1 Visas in the United States," Working Paper Series WP05-15, Peterson Institute for International Economics.
  18. Mark A. Planting & Jiemin Guo, 2002. "Increasing the Timeliness of U.S. Annual I-O Accounts," BEA Papers 0022, Bureau of Economic Analysis.
  19. Dale W. Jorgenson & Kevin J. Stiroh, 2000. "Raising the Speed Limit: U.S. Economic Growth in the Information Age," Brookings Papers on Economic Activity, Economic Studies Program, The Brookings Institution, vol. 31(1), pages 125-236.
  20. Jacob Funk Kirkegaard, 2005. "Outsourcing and Offshoring: Pushing the European Model Over the Hill, Rather Than Off the Cliff!," Working Paper Series WP05-1, Peterson Institute for International Economics.
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