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Distribution Trade Sector Output and Productivity Performance: A Case Study of Singapore and Hong Kong 2001-2008

Author

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  • Boon Lee

    () (QUT)

Abstract

This paper employs the industry of origin approach to compare value added and productivity of Singapore and Hong Kong's Distribution Trade Sector for the period 2001-2008. The direct comparison between these two economies was motivated by the statements of the Singapore government: Its services sector, especially in Retail Trade, lags behind Hong Kong's productivity levels. The results show that since 2005, Singapore's Distribution performance in terms of labour productivity was below Hong Kong's level, which was largely due to poor performance in its Retail Trade sector arising from an influx of foreign workers. Results from total factor productivity (TFP) between these two economies also suggest that Hong Kong's better performance (since 2005) was largely due to its ability to employ more educated and trained workers with limited use of capital. The results suggest that polices that worked in Hong Kong may not work for Singapore because its population is more diverse which poses a challenge to policy-makers in raising its productivity level.

Suggested Citation

  • Boon Lee, 2011. "Distribution Trade Sector Output and Productivity Performance: A Case Study of Singapore and Hong Kong 2001-2008," School of Economics and Finance Discussion Papers and Working Papers Series 270, School of Economics and Finance, Queensland University of Technology.
  • Handle: RePEc:qut:dpaper:270
    as

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    File URL: http://external-apps.qut.edu.au/business/documents/discussionPapers/2011/WP270.pdf
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Li, Hongyi & Wei, Xiangdong & Xie, Danyang, 2009. "Competitiveness of the Hong Kong economy," China Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 20(3), pages 573-586, September.
    2. Lorraine Dearden & Howard Reed & John Van Reenen, 2006. "The Impact of Training on Productivity and Wages: Evidence from British Panel Data," Oxford Bulletin of Economics and Statistics, Department of Economics, University of Oxford, vol. 68(4), pages 397-421, August.
    3. Bart van Ark & Erik Monnikhof & Nanno Mulder, 1999. "Productivity in services: an international comparative perspective," Canadian Journal of Economics, Canadian Economics Association, vol. 32(2), pages 471-499, April.
    4. Renuka Mahadevan, 2000. "Sources of output growth in Singapore's services sector," Empirical Economics, Springer, vol. 25(3), pages 495-506.
    5. Keogh-Brown, Marcus Richard & Smith, Richard David, 2008. "The economic impact of SARS: How does the reality match the predictions?," Health Policy, Elsevier, vol. 88(1), pages 110-120, October.
    6. Renuka Mahadevan, 2002. "A frontier approach to measuring total factor productivity growth in Singapore’s services sector," Journal of Economic Studies, Emerald Group Publishing, vol. 29(1), pages 48-58, January.
    7. Nancy Kong & Jose Tongzon, 2006. "Estimating total factor productivity growth in Singapore at sectoral level using data envelopment analysis," Applied Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 38(19), pages 2299-2314.
    8. Rachel Griffith, 2007. "Technology, Productivity and Public Policy," Fiscal Studies, Institute for Fiscal Studies, vol. 28(3), pages 273-291, September.
    9. Hill, T P, 1977. "On Goods and Services," Review of Income and Wealth, International Association for Research in Income and Wealth, vol. 23(4), pages 315-338, December.
    10. R. Quentin Grafton & Stephen Knowles & P. Dorian Owen, 2004. "Total Factor Productivity, Per Capita Income and Social Divergence," The Economic Record, The Economic Society of Australia, vol. 80(250), pages 302-313, September.
    11. Alwyn Young, 1995. "The Tyranny of Numbers: Confronting the Statistical Realities of the East Asian Growth Experience," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 110(3), pages 641-680.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    More about this item

    Keywords

    purchasing power parities; distribution trade; wholesale trade; retail trade; total factor productivity; labour productivity;

    JEL classification:

    • C43 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Econometric and Statistical Methods: Special Topics - - - Index Numbers and Aggregation
    • D24 - Microeconomics - - Production and Organizations - - - Production; Cost; Capital; Capital, Total Factor, and Multifactor Productivity; Capacity
    • L81 - Industrial Organization - - Industry Studies: Services - - - Retail and Wholesale Trade; e-Commerce
    • O47 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Growth and Aggregate Productivity - - - Empirical Studies of Economic Growth; Aggregate Productivity; Cross-Country Output Convergence

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