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Can Real Exchange Rate Undervaluation Boost Exports and Growth in Developing Countries? Yes, But Not for Long

  • Mona Haddad
  • Cosimo Pancaro

A policy of managed real undervaluation may have been an important factor behind the success of East Asia’s export-led growth model. But current discussions over the value of China’s currency demonstrate the controversy this kind of policy can generate. Although a managed real undervaluation can enhance domestic competitiveness, it is difficult to sustain—both economically and politically—in the post-crisis environment. We show that a real undervaluation works only for low-income countries, and only in the medium term.

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Paper provided by The World Bank in its series World Bank Other Operational Studies with number 10178.

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Date of creation: Jun 2010
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Handle: RePEc:wbk:wboper:10178
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  1. Mckenzie, Michael D., 1998. "The impact of exchange rate volatility on Australian trade flows," Journal of International Financial Markets, Institutions and Money, Elsevier, vol. 8(1), pages 21-38, January.
  2. Philippe Aghion & Philippe Bacchetta & Romain Ranciere & Kenneth Rogoff, 2006. "Exchange Rate Volatility and Productivity Growth: The Role of Financial Development," Working Papers 06.02, Swiss National Bank, Study Center Gerzensee.
  3. Luis Servén, 2003. "Real-Exchange-Rate Uncertainty and Private Investment in LDCS," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 85(1), pages 212-218, February.
  4. Chit, Myint Moe & Rizov, Marian & Willenbockel, Dirk, 2008. "Exchange Rate Volatility and Exports: New Empirical Evidence from the Emerging East Asian Economies," MPRA Paper 9014, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  5. Arvind Subramanian & Jonathan David Ostry & Simon Johnson, 2007. "The Prospects for Sustained Growth in Africa; Benchmarking the Constraints," IMF Working Papers 07/52, International Monetary Fund.
  6. William Easterly, 2003. "National Policies and Economic Growth: A Reappraisal," Working Papers 27, Center for Global Development.
  7. Bleaney, Michael & Greenaway, David, 2001. "The impact of terms of trade and real exchange rate volatility on investment and growth in sub-Saharan Africa," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 65(2), pages 491-500, August.
  8. Atish R. Ghosh & Anne-Marie Gulde & Jonathan D. Ostry & Holger C. Wolf, 1997. "Does The Nominal Exchange Rate Regime Matter?," Working Papers 97-09, New York University, Leonard N. Stern School of Business, Department of Economics.
  9. Bosworth, B. & Collins, S.M. & Chen, Y.C., 1995. "Accounting for Differences in Economic Growth," Papers 115, Brookings Institution - Working Papers.
  10. Sauer, Christine & Bohara, Alok K, 2001. "Exchange Rate Volatility and Exports: Regional Differences between Developing and Industrialized Countries," Review of International Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 9(1), pages 133-52, February.
  11. Luis Servén, 2003. "ERRATUM: Real-Exchange-Rate Uncertainty and Private Investment in LDCs," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 85(2), pages 492-492, May.
  12. Arize, Augustine C & Osang, Thomas & Slottje, Daniel J, 2000. "Exchange-Rate Volatility and Foreign Trade: Evidence from Thirteen LDC's," Journal of Business & Economic Statistics, American Statistical Association, vol. 18(1), pages 10-17, January.
  13. Klein, Michael W., 1990. "Sectoral effects of exchange rate volatility on United States exports," Journal of International Money and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 9(3), pages 299-308, September.
  14. Alvaro Aguirre & César Calderón, 2005. "Real Exchange Rate Misalignments and Economic Performance," Working Papers Central Bank of Chile 316, Central Bank of Chile.
  15. Korinek, Anton & Serven, Luis, 2010. "Undervaluation through foreign reserve accumulation : static losses, dynamic gains," Policy Research Working Paper Series 5250, The World Bank.
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