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Trade, Reform, And Structural Transformation in South Korea

  • Betts, Caroline
  • Giri, Rahul
  • Verma, Rubina

A two country, three sector hybrid model of structural change with distortionary government policies is used to quantify the impact of international trade and trade reform for industrialization. The model features Arming- ton motivated trade in agriculture and industry, and a novel representation of trade reform as a time sequence of import tariffs, export subsidies and lump sum government transfers of net tariff revenue. We calibrate our economy to data on South Korea and the OECD, inputting time series of country and sector specific labor productivity, tariffs and export subsidies which determine evolution of the effective pattern of comparative advantage. The model’s predicted reallocations of Korean labor from agriculture into industry and services from 1963 through 2000 are quantitatively similar to those in the data. Incorporating trade and measured Korean trade reform are both important for the accuracy of this predicted structural change, although interna- tional real income differences under non-homothetic preferences primarily determine trade and specialization patterns rather than comparative advantage. Counterfactually eliminating a) international trade b) interna- tional labor productivity differentials c) post 1967 Korean tariff reform and d) post 1967 industrial export subsidy reform increase the model’s SSE by 91 percent, 56 percent, 27 percent, and 62 percent respectively.

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Paper provided by University Library of Munich, Germany in its series MPRA Paper with number 49540.

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Date of creation: 31 Jul 2013
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Handle: RePEc:pra:mprapa:49540
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  1. Daron Acemoglu & Veronica Guerrieri, 2006. "Capital Deepening and Non-Balanced Economic Growth," NBER Working Papers 12475, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Christian Zimmermann, 1995. "International Real Business Cycles among Heterogeneous Countries," Cahiers de recherche CREFE / CREFE Working Papers 38, CREFE, Université du Québec à Montréal.
  3. Ina Simonovska & Michael Waugh, 2011. "The Elasticity of Trade: Estimates and Evidence," Working Papers 112, University of California, Davis, Department of Economics.
  4. Kiminori Matsuyama, 2009. "Structural Change in an Interdependent World: A Global View of Manufacturing Decline," Journal of the European Economic Association, MIT Press, vol. 7(2-3), pages 478-486, 04-05.
  5. Jing Zhang & Kei-Mu Yi, 2009. "Structural Change in an Open Economy," 2009 Meeting Papers 804, Society for Economic Dynamics.
  6. Giri, Rahul, 2008. "Local Costs of Distribution, International Trade Costs and Micro Evidence on the Law of One Price," MPRA Paper 10257, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  7. Murat Üngör, 2009. "De-industrialization of the Riches and the Rise of China," DEGIT Conference Papers c014_040, DEGIT, Dynamics, Economic Growth, and International Trade.
  8. Kei-Mu Yi, 2000. "Can vertical specialization explain the growth of world trade?," Staff Reports 96, Federal Reserve Bank of New York.
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