Journal articles published externally

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These are journal articles by World Bank authors published externally.

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    Gravity and Friction in Growing East Asia
    ( 2009) Gill, Indermit ; Kharas, Homi
    Without the advantages of low wages or high skills, East Asian economies are following a new path of regional integration, led by China. Along this path, policy-makers must manage a migration of 2 million people a month to East Asia's cities, a sharp and unprecedented increase in income inequality, and a growing discontent with corruption as governance structures have been decentralized. Having successfully integrated globally before the financial meltdown of the 1990s, and integrating regionally at an even faster pace since then, East Asia's middle-income countries must now accelerate a third integration, this time at home. Growth based on scale economies and specialization requires managing both gravity and friction. This article outlines what East Asian nations must do to manage these forces even as another financial meltdown is taking place. How well they can do this will determine whether they will grow through middle income to join the ranks of developed economies or not escape the 'middle-income trap'.
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    Transparency and Regional Integration in the Asia Pacific
    ( 2009) Helble, Matthias ; Shepherd, Ben ; Wilson, John S.
    We show in this paper that increasing the transparency of the trading environment can be an important complement to traditional liberalisation of tariff and non-tariff barriers. Our definition of transparency is grounded in a transaction cost analysis. We focus on two dimensions of transparency: predictability (reducing the cost of uncertainty) and simplification (reducing information costs). Using the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) member economies as a case study, we construct indices of importer and exporter transparency for the region from a wide range of sources. Our results from a gravity model suggest that improving trade-related transparency in APEC could hold significant benefits by raising intra-APEC trade by approximately US $148 billion or 7.5 per cent of baseline trade in the region. Action to improve transparency measures examined could be undertaken in many forms, including within the current APEC framework or future talks on a Free Trade Area in the Asia Pacific.
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    East Asian Preferential Trade Agreements in Services : Liberalization Content and WTO Rules
    ( 2008) Fink, Carsten ; Molinuevo, Martin
    The past seven years have seen a rapid proliferation of preferential trade agreements (PTAs) in the East Asian region. Many of the recently concluded PTAs are comprehensive in their coverage, seeking not only the dismantling of barriers to trade in goods but also the liberalization of trade in services. This paper offers an assessment of this recent wave of services agreements in East Asia, focusing on their liberalization content and their compliance with WTO rules on regional integration. It draws on a database in which the authors recorded the value added of PTA liberalization undertakings relative to pre-existing multilateral services commitments. Among other things, this database is used to empirically assess the effect of the scheduling approach on the depth and breadth of liberalization undertakings.