Freund, Caroline

Macroeconomics Trade & Investment
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Last updated January 31, 2023
Caroline Freund is Director of Trade, Regional Integration and Investment Climate. Previously she was a Senior Fellow at the Peterson Institute for International Economics.  She has also worked as Chief Economist for the Middle East and North Africa at the World Bank, after working for nearly a decade in the international trade unit of the research department.  Freund began her career in the international finance division of the Federal Reserve Board and spent a year visiting the research department of the IMF.  She has published extensively in academic journals and is the author of Rich People Poor Countries: The Rise of Emerging Market Tycoons and their Mega Firms.  She is a US national and received a PhD in economics from Columbia University.
Citations 232 Scopus

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Now showing 1 - 4 of 4
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    The Anatomy of China's Export Growth
    (World Bank, Washington, DC, 2008-05) Amiti, Mary ; Freund, Caroline
    Decomposing China's real export growth, of over 500 percent since 1992, reveals a number of interesting findings. First, China's export structure changed dramatically, with growing export shares in electronics and machinery and a decline in agriculture and apparel. Second, despite the shift into these more sophisticated products, the skill content of China's manufacturing exports remained unchanged, once processing trade is excluded. Third, export growth was accompanied by increasing specialization and was mainly accounted for by high export growth of existing products (the intensive margin) rather than in new varieties (the extensive margin). Fourth, consistent with an increased world supply of existing varieties, China's export prices to the United States fell by an average of 1.5 percent per year between 1997 and 2005, while export prices of these products from the rest of the world to the United States increased by 0.4 percent annually over the same period.
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    Which Firms Do Foreigners Buy? Evidence from the Republic of Korea
    (World Bank, Washington, DC, 2000-09) Freund, Caroline ; Djankov, Simeon
    Using data on mergers and acquisitions involving Korean firms, the authors identify which sectors and firms attracted foreign investment after the liberalization of investment of activity at the end of 1997. They find that domestic acquisitions are similar to foreign acquisitions by sector (of both the target and the acquiring firm), but that international transactions are larger than Korean transactions. This suggests that consolidation is a two-stage process: Firms consolidate first domestically, then internationally. The authors also find that foreign investment is focused on high-value-added sectors, on larger and more profitable firms, on firms with low debt, and on firms that export a large share of output. Their results suggest that growth induces foreign investment.
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    Natural Disasters and the Reshaping of Global Value Chains
    (World Bank, Washington, DC, 2021-06) Freund, Caroline ; Mattoo, Aaditya ; Mulabdic, Alen ; Ruta, Michele ; Mattoo, Aaditya
    To understand the longer term consequences of natural disasters for global value chains, this paper examines trade in the automobile and electronic sectors after the 2011 earthquake in Japan. Contrary to widespread expectations, the analysis shows that the shock did not lead to reshoring, nearshoring, or diversification; and trade in intermediate products was disrupted less than trade in final goods. Imports did shift to new suppliers, especially where dependence on Japan was greater. But production relocated to developing countries rather than to other top exporters. Despite important differences, the observed pattern of switching may be relevant to disasters like the COVID-19 pandemic.
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    When Elephants Make Peace: The Impact of the China-U.S. Trade Agreement on Developing Countries
    (World Bank, Washington, DC, 2020-03) Freund, Caroline ; Maliszewska, Maryla ; Mattoo, Aaditya ; Ruta, Michele ; Mattoo, Aaditya
    Should the China-U.S. trade agreement prompt relief because it averts a damaging trade war or concern because selective preferential access for the United States to China's markets breaks multilateral rules against discrimination? The answer depends on how China implements the agreement. Simulations from a computable general equilibrium model suggest that the United States and China would be better off under this "managed trade" agreement than if the trade war had escalated. However, compared with the policy status quo, the deal will make everyone worse off except the United States and its input-supplying neighbor, Mexico. Real incomes in the rest of world would decline by 0.16 percent and in China by 0.38 percent because of trade diversion. China can reverse those losses if, instead of granting the United States privileged entry, it opens its market for all trading partners. Global income would be 0.6 percent higher than under the managed trade scenario, and China's income would be nearly 0.5 percent higher. By creating a stronger incentive for China to open its markets to all, an exercise in bilateral mercantilism has the potential to become an instrument for multilateral liberalization.