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Specialization on a technologically stagnant sector need not be bad for growth

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  • Felbermayr, Gabriel

Abstract

This paper presents a two-sector, North-South model of endogenous growth, where the investment goods sector features learning by doing. There are no technological spillovers across countries that are integrated only via goods markets. In equilibrium, South specializes on the consumption sector. Despite strict concavity of the production function for consumption goods, the endogenous decline in the relative price of investment goods maintains the incentives for capital accumulation. Hence, specialization on the stagnant consumption sector does not entail a growth penalty. The model is consistent with a number of empirical observations: (i) the relative price of investment goods has been declining in many countries; (ii) poor countries are net importers of investment equipment; (iii) per capita income convergence has stopped in the sample of open economies.

Suggested Citation

  • Felbermayr, Gabriel, 2007. "Specialization on a technologically stagnant sector need not be bad for growth," Munich Reprints in Economics 20645, University of Munich, Department of Economics.
  • Handle: RePEc:lmu:muenar:20645
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    1. Raouf Boucekkine & Fernando del Río & Omar Licandro, 2003. "Embodied Technological Change, Learning-by-doing and the Productivity Slowdown," Scandinavian Journal of Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 105(1), pages 87-98, March.
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    3. Rebelo, Sergio, 1991. "Long-Run Policy Analysis and Long-Run Growth," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 99(3), pages 500-521, June.
    4. Daron Acemoglu & Jaume Ventura, 2002. "The World Income Distribution," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 117(2), pages 659-694.
    5. William Easterly & Ross Levine & David Roodman, 2003. "New Data, New doubts: A Comment on Burnside and Dollar's "Aid, Policies, and Growth" (2000)," NBER Working Papers 9846, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    6. Maurice Obstfeld & Alan M. Taylor, 2003. "Globalization and Capital Markets," NBER Chapters,in: Globalization in Historical Perspective, pages 121-188 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    7. Jaume Ventura, 1997. "Growth and Interdependence," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 112(1), pages 57-84.
    8. 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, Oxford University Press, vol. 114(1), pages 83-116.
    9. Felbermayr Gabriel J & Licandro Omar, 2005. "The Underestimated Virtues of the Two-sector AK Model," The B.E. Journal of Macroeconomics, De Gruyter, vol. 5(1), pages 1-19, September.
    10. Lucas, Robert Jr., 1988. "On the mechanics of economic development," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 22(1), pages 3-42, July.
    11. Grilli, Enzo R & Yang, Maw Cheng, 1988. "Primary Commodity Prices, Manufactured Goods Prices, and the Terms of Trade of Developing Countries: What the Long Run Shows," World Bank Economic Review, World Bank Group, vol. 2(1), pages 1-47, January.
    12. Nancy L. Stokey, 1991. "Human Capital, Product Quality, and Growth," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 106(2), pages 587-616.
    13. Restuccia, Diego & Urrutia, Carlos, 2001. "Relative prices and investment rates," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 47(1), pages 93-121, February.
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    Cited by:

    1. Hiroaki Sasaki, 2013. "Positive and Negative Population Growth and Long-Run Trade Patterns: A Non-Scale Growth Model," Discussion papers e-13-004, Graduate School of Economics Project Center, Kyoto University.
    2. Hiroaki Sasaki, 2008. "North-South Asymmetry in Returns to Scale, Uneven Development, and the Population Puzzle," TERG Discussion Papers 238, Graduate School of Economics and Management, Tohoku University.
    3. Gabriel J. Felbermayr, 2005. "Dynamic Panel Data Evidence on the Trade-Income Relation," Review of World Economics (Weltwirtschaftliches Archiv), Springer;Institut für Weltwirtschaft (Kiel Institute for the World Economy), vol. 141(4), pages 583-611, December.
    4. Hiroaki Sasaki, 2012. "Trade Patterns and Non-Scale Growth between Two Countries," Discussion papers e-12-006, Graduate School of Economics Project Center, Kyoto University.
    5. Hiroaki Sasaki, 2011. "Trade, Non‐Scale Growth And Uneven Development," Metroeconomica, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 62(4), pages 691-711, November.
    6. Maoz, Yishay D. & Peled, Dan & Sarid, Assaf, 2011. "Trade agreements, bargaining and economic growth," Journal of Macroeconomics, Elsevier, vol. 33(1), pages 92-101, March.
    7. repec:eee:streco:v:41:y:2017:i:c:p:1-12 is not listed on IDEAS

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • F43 - International Economics - - Macroeconomic Aspects of International Trade and Finance - - - Economic Growth of Open Economies
    • O41 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Growth and Aggregate Productivity - - - One, Two, and Multisector Growth Models

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