Where Did the Trade Liberalization Drive Latin American Economy: A Cross Section Analysis
The institutional reforms towards trade liberalizations in Latin America during the 1980s and the 1990s have introduced a good measure of import competition, but trade policies alone are not sufficient to create a competitive environment in an economy. The countries in Latin America have not had much experience with competition policies in the past. Combined with restrictive trade policies, the absence of competition policies has often led to monopolized domestic markets. The balance of payments crisis shocks have also contributed significantly to differences in growth performance and associated with a large decline of growth rates and develops into another crisis in the future. The trade competitiveness among the countries of Latin American region have revealed higher export sensitivity to world commodity prices, domestic absorption and economic activity combined with a high income elasticity of imports. This paper attempts to analyze the extent of trade competitiveness and its impact on the economic welfare measures in the Latin American countries. The analysis concentrates on the total factor productivity and exports in the countries of the region in reference to the economic growth pattern emerged during 1950-2003. The Cobb-Douglas function has been used to measure the total factor productivity and Nash equilibrium has been calculated to measure the economic welfare gains among the trading blocs in the Latin American region. The results of the study determine that international liquidity, financial soundness, real exchange rate depreciation and monetary policy play a critical role in reducing output losses and increasing the economic welfare gains.
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