Business and Economics > Industries: Service

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Mr. Christian H Ebeke, Jan-Martin Frie, and Louise Rabier
The services sector is increasingly important for the euro area economy, but productivity growth in the sector has stalled over the past two decades. Remaining barriers to cross-border trade in services within the EU Single Market contribute to this weak performance. Our empirical analysis suggests that slow progress in tackling these barriers is associated with political economy factors such as weak government support in parliaments, low government efficiency and high markups. To remove the cross-border restrictions on services trade, we suggest combining incentives such as financial support, technical assistance and improved communication on barriers with more effective enforcement.
Rui Xu and Kaiji Gong
We analyze the impact of rising import competition from China on U.S. innovative activities. Using Compustat data, we find that import competition induces R&D expenditures to be reallocated towards more productive and more profitable firms within each industry. Such reallocation effect has the potential to offset the average drop in firm-level R&D identified in the previous literature. Indeed, our quantitative analysis shows no adverse impact of import competition on aggregate R&D expenditures. Taking the analysis beyond manufacturing, we find that import competition has led to reallocation of researchers towards booming service industries, including business and repairs, personal services, and financial services.
Mr. Prakash Loungani, Mr. Saurabh Mishra, Mr. Chris Papageorgiou, and Ke Wang
Using a newly constructed dataset on trade in services for 192 countries from 1970 to 2014, this paper shows that services currently constitute one-fourth of world trade and an increasingly important component of global production. A detailed analysis of patterns and stylized facts reveals that exports of services are not only gaining strong momentum and catching up with exports of goods in many countries, but they could also trigger a new wave of trade globalization. Research applications of the trade in service dataset on structural transformation, resilience, labor reallocation, and income distribution are outlined.
Mr. Nizar Jouini and Mr. Nooman Rebei
We propose an integrated method based on a two-sector small open economy dynamic and stochastic general equilibrium model to estimate non-tariff barriers and quantify the impact of services liberalization. The major component of trade barriers is explicitly modeled through the introduction of entry-sunk costs. Hence, liberalization is treated assuming a government's policy decision aimed at reducing those costs. Then, we estimate the model using Bayesian techniques for Tunisia and the Euro Area. The paper presents a precise quantitative evaluation of services trade barriers as the difference between entry-sunk costs in Tunisia versus the Euro Area. We find significant welfare benefits in addition to aggregate and sectoral growth gains the Tunisian economy could attain following services liberalization. Surprisingly, the goods sector is the one that benefits the most from services liberalization in the short- and long-term horizons.
International Monetary Fund. European Dept.
The paper identifies France’s structural reforms that would yield the largest competitiveness gains based on macro-empirical evidence, and reviews signs of potential gains from a deregulation of the services sector. It is expected that completing deregulation in the services sector would benefit the entire French economy, by boosting productivity and exports. Econometric results have estimated the impact of reducing the labor taxation and labor market rigidities and of increasing innovation to the average level of other advanced countries.
Mrs. Poonam Gupta and Mr. James P. F. Gordon
This paper analyzes the factors behind the recent growth of India's services sector. The high growth of services output in the 1990s was mostly due to the rapid expansion of communication, banking, business services (including the IT sector) and community services. While factors such as a high income elasticity of demand for services, increasing input usage of services by other sectors, and rising exports, were important in boosting services growth in the 1990s, supply side factors including reforms and technological advances also played significant roles. Going forward, the growth potential of Indian services exports is well known, but the paper also finds considerable scope for growth in the Indian service economy provided that deregulation continues. In addition, the paper shows that employment growth in the Indian services sector has been quite modest, thus underscoring the need for industry and agriculture to also grow rapidly.
Ms. Natalia T. Tamirisa, Mr. Alexander Lehmann, and Mr. Jaroslaw Wieczorek
This paper reviews the characteristics of international trade in services and of the World Trade Organization’s General Agreement on Trade in Services (GATS) framework, which was established to regulate it. Further liberalization of services trade in developing countries, as currently envisaged in the context of the WTO Doha Development Agenda, holds a number of potential benefits, such as underpinning the liberalization of goods trade, but it is also being resisted due to its potential adjustment costs. Two implications for IMF activities are examined: coherence among the three principal international economic institutions and sequencing with macroeconomic stabilization and regulatory reforms.
Mr. Ramana Ramaswamy and Mr. Bob Rowthorn
All advanced economies have experienced a secular decline in the share of manufacturing employment—a phenomenon referred to as deindustrialization. This paper argues that, contrary to popular perceptions, deindustrialization is not a negative phenomenon, but is the natural consequence of the industrial dynamism in an already developed economy, and that North-South trade has had very little to do with deindustrialization. The paper also discusses the implications of deindustrialization for the growth prospects and the nature of labor market arrangements in the advanced economies.