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International Monetary Fund. Asia and Pacific Dept

Abstract

Growth in the first half of 2018 was softer than in 2017, especially in advanced economies. In contrast, growth remained robust in emerging market economies and broadly in line with expectations. After rising to 6.9 percent in 2017, growth in China continued to be strong into the first half of 2018 but has likely slowed since, given the latest high-frequency indicators, including weakening investment growth. In Japan, after exceeding potential for two years, growth dropped into negative territory in the first quarter of 2018 before rebounding sharply in the second quarter. In India, growth continues to recover steadily after the disruptions related to demonetization and the rollout of the goods and services tax in the last fiscal year.1 And in ASEAN-4 economies (Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines, Thailand), growth generally lost momentum in the first half of 2018, except in Thailand.

Mr. Ichiro Tokutsu and Mika Saito
This paper explores the effect of trade on the relative wage of less-skilled labor through its effect on world prices, which are typically exogenously given under the small open economy assumption. Using the 1995 international input-output data for APEC member countries, we numerically simulate a general equilibrium model to study the effects of abolishing existing tariffs under the assumption that each member country is large enough to affect the prices of goods and services produced in the region. We find that the responsiveness of prices plays an important role in easing a possible adverse effect of trade on relative wages.
Mr. Stephen Tokarick
This paper examines the question: Who bears the larger portion of the excess burden of a tariff-the country that imposes it, or a country that it trades with? For a country that can influence its terms of trade, there are two ways of approaching this question. This paper shows that under certain assumptions, the extra burden from a marginal change in the homecountry tariff is shared equally between the home and foreign country at a tariff rate equal to twice the optimal tariff for the home country. Also, the cumulative welfare effect of a tariff in the home country, relative to free trade, turns out to be equalized across countries when the home tariff equals four times its optimal tariff. The paper provides an application of these results and points policymakers to the types of data that are relevant if they want to negotiate over "burden sharing."
International Monetary Fund
This Selected Issues paper presents an analysis of trends in growth and investment in India in the 1990s, with a focus on the slowdown in growth during the second half of the 1990s. The paper discusses the fiscal situation, outlining the key reasons for the deterioration in fiscal balances, how the fiscal situation compares with other developing countries, and the key lessons from countries that managed successful fiscal consolidation. The paper also contains an assessment of India’s opening to global trade and factors that may be affecting India’s export performance.
Mr. R. B. Johnston and Mr. Mark Swinburne

Abstract

This study reviews the developments and issues in the exchange arrangements and currency convertibility of IMF members. The principal information source for this report is the Annual Report on Exchange Arrangements and Exchange Restrictions prepared in consultation with national authorities.

International Monetary Fund
This Selected Issues paper on Sri Lanka provides background information on economic developments and on selected policy issues facing Sri Lanka. The main economic developments in 1996 and the first quarter of 1997 are discussed. The paper highlights that in 1996, a severe drought, power shortages, and an escalation in the military conflict contributed to a sharp deterioration in the economic situation. With the end of the drought and power shortages, and a rise in investor confidence, macroeconomic conditions in 1997 were more favorable.
International Monetary Fund
This Background Paper and Statistical Annex examines selected issues pertaining to the Mauritian economy, which are all related to the question of how Mauritius will be able in the future to sustain its export-led development and diversify its economy. The paper discusses the impact of the Uruguay Round agreement on the Mauritian economy. The paper also utilizes available data to assess Mauritius’s external competitiveness, which is a major issue as regards the sustainability of high export growth.
Mr. David Robinson, Mr. Ranjit S Teja, Yangho Byeon, and Ms. Wanda S Tseng

Abstract

Thailand's sucess with economic development in recent decades is due mainly to is commitment to an outward-looking, market-based economy, a development strategy centered on the private sector, and cautious financial policies. This papers dicusses recent economic strains and how the authorities are coping with them to sustain the momentum of development

International Monetary Fund
The study reveals agricultural import restrictions are widely applied in Asia, but that Japan and Korea impose lower average tariffs and nontariff barriers with less frequency than most Asian countries. It also finds several low and middle-income countries enforce relatively low protection for basic foodstuffs, while high-income countries tend to impose relatively high protection for foods. Finally, commodity patterns of trade and protection suggest scope exists for successful reciprocal negotiations to liberalize agricultural trade mainly between low and middle-income Asian countries. Though similar gains might be achieved by unilateral liberalization, reciprocal negotiations are more feasible politically and, on a most-favored-nation basis, would imply greater trade expansion.
International Monetary Fund. Research Dept.
This paper studies the flow of primary commodity exports from non-oil exporting developing countries grouped by geographical region. The first part analyzes the changes in the structure of developing country commodity exports that have taken place over the past two decades. The second part presents empirical evidence on the response of commodity exports to demand and supply. These empirical results point to the low price and income elasticities of demand for certain primary commodity exports and to price elasticities of supply that are in general lower than the corresponding price elasticities of demand in the short run, but that are more sensitive to price in the longer run.