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Central America, Panama, and the Dominican Republic; Trade Integration and Economic Performance

  • Stephanie Medina Cas
  • Andrew Swiston
  • Luis-Diego Barrot

This paper studies the potential for the export sector to play a more important role in promoting growth in Central America, Panama, and the Dominican Republic (CAPDR) through deeper intra-regional and global trade integration. CAPDR countries have enacted many free trade agreements and other regional integration initiatives in recent years, but this paper finds that their exports remain below the norm for countries of their size. Several indexes of outward orientation are constructed and suggest that the breadth of geographic trading relationships, depth of integration into global production chains, and degree of technological sophistication of exports in CAPDR are less conducive to higher exports and growth than in fast-growing, export-oriented economies. To boost exports and growth, CAPDR should implement policies to facilitate economic integration, particularly building a customs union, harmonizing trade rules, improving logistics and infrastructure, and enhancing regional cordination.

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Paper provided by International Monetary Fund in its series IMF Working Papers with number 12/234.

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Length: 40
Date of creation: 27 Sep 2012
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:imf:imfwpa:12/234
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  1. Wacziarg, Romain & Alesina, Alberto, 1998. "Openness, Country Size and Government," Scholarly Articles 4553014, Harvard University Department of Economics.
  2. Mishra, Saurabh & Lundstrom, Susanna & Anand, Rahul, 2011. "Service export sophistication and economic growth," Policy Research Working Paper Series 5606, The World Bank.
  3. Robert J. Barro & Jong-Wha Lee, 2010. "A New Data Set of Educational Attainment in the World, 1950-2010," NBER Working Papers 15902, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  4. repec:imf:imfwpa:11/248 is not listed on IDEAS
  5. Brenton, Paul & Newfarmer, Richard & Walkenhorst, Peter, 2009. "Avenues for Export Diversification: Issues for Low-Income Countries," MPRA Paper 22758, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  6. Asier Minondo, 2010. "Exports' quality-adjusted productivity and economic growth," The Journal of International Trade & Economic Development, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 19(2), pages 257-287.
  7. Brenton, Paul & Newfarmer, Richard, 2007. "Watching more than the Discovery channel : export cycles and diversification in development," Policy Research Working Paper Series 4302, The World Bank.
  8. Robert C. Feenstra & Robert E. Lipsey & Haiyan Deng & Alyson C. Ma & Hengyong Mo, 2005. "World Trade Flows: 1962-2000," NBER Working Papers 11040, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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