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Kathuria, Sanjay

Macroeconomics, Trade, and Investment Global Practice
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economic growth, economic integration, international trade policy, economic competitiveness, fiscal policy, technology development, financial sector development, gender and development
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Macroeconomics, Trade, and Investment Global Practice
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Last updated January 31, 2023
Biography
Sanjay Kathuria is Adjunct Professor, Georgetown University; Visiting Faculty, Ashoka University; Senior Visiting Fellow at the Centre for Policy Research, India; and Non-Resident Senior Fellow at the Institute of South Asian Studies, Singapore. Earlier, he was a Lead Economist at the World Bank in Washington, D.C. Sanjay Kathuria is one of the leading thinkers and commentators on economic integration in South Asia and the economic development of the region. In 27 years at the World Bank, from 1992 to 2019, he worked in South Asia, Latin America and the Caribbean, and Eastern Europe, including field assignments in New Delhi and Dhaka. Before joining the World Bank, he was a Fellow at the Indian Council for Research on International Economic Relations in New Delhi, from 1982-1992.

Publication Search Results

Now showing 1 - 8 of 8
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    Unlocking Bangladesh-India Trade : Emerging Potential and the Way Forward
    (World Bank, Washington, DC, 2012-08) De, Prabir ; Raihan, Selim ; Kathuria, Sanjay
    The primary objective of this study is to analyze the impact on Bangladesh of increased market access in India, both within a static production structure and also identifying dynamic gains. The study shows that Bangladesh and India would both gain by opening up their markets to each other. Indian investments in Bangladesh will be very important for the latter to ramp up its exports, including products that would broaden trade complementarity and enhance intra-industry trade, and improve its trade standards and trade-handling capacity. A bilateral Free Trade Agreement would lift Bangladesh's exports to India by 182 percent, and nearly 300 percent if transaction costs were also reduced through improved connectivity. These numbers, based on existing trade patterns, represent a lower bound of the potential increase in Bangladesh's exports arising from a Free Trade Agreement. A Free Trade Agreement would also raise India's exports to Bangladesh. India's provision of duty-free access for all Bangladeshi products (already done) could increase the latter's exports to India by 134 percent. In helping Bangladesh's economy to grow, India would stimulate economic activity in its own eastern and north-eastern states. Challenges exist, however, including non-tariff measures/barriers in both countries, excessive bureaucracy, weak trade facilitation, and customs inefficiencies. Trade in education and health care services offers valuable prospects, but also suffers from market access issues. To enable larger gains, Bangladesh-India cooperation should go beyond goods trade and include investment, finance, services trade, trade facilitation, and technology transfer, and be placed within the context of regional cooperation.
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    Opening Up Markets to Neighbors : Gains for Smaller Countries in South Asia
    (World Bank, Washington, DC, 2015-01) Kathuria, Sanjay ; Shahid, Sohaib
    The South Asia Free Trade Area (SAFTA) came into effect in 2006, but free and unfettered trade is still a work in progress. Drawing from theory and evidence, this note looks at how all countries, especially the smaller ones, can gain from mutual trade liberalization. Consumers, exporters, and producers, the three key players in this debate, all stand to gain from multilateral trade. Consumers enjoy lower prices, more product variety, and better quality goods. Exporters obtain access to much larger markets and sourcing opportunities for key inputs. Producers are incentivized to become more efficient, increase their sizes and scales via access to a bigger market, gain cheaper and higher quality inputs, and receive more foreign direct investment (FDI). As an example of how smaller South Asian nations can reap significant benefits, the US-Mexican asymmetry case study is presented, demonstrating how Mexico rose to become the world's thirteenth largest economy after joining NAFTA. Given that the South Asia region is in the process of making SAFTA effective, nations that hold out from the process could suffer by being "innocent bystanders," which is a welfare loss faced by a country that does not fully participate in a regional agreement being created around it.
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    How Has Regional Integration Taken Place in Other Regions?: Lessons for South Asia
    (World Bank, Washington, DC, 2015-04) Kathuria, Sanjay ; Shahid, Sohaib ; Ferrantino, Michael Joseph
    As the momentum for multilateral trade liberalization has slowed, an increasing amount of liberalization is taking place at a regional level. As of April 2015, there are 406 regional trade agreements (RTAs) in force worldwide, more than double the number in force in 2000. These agreements cover over half of international trade. Countries engage in regional cooperation for a variety of reasons. First, it is easier to achieve agreement among a small number of regional partners than it is globally. Second, regional cooperation takes advantage of existing natural tendencies for regional trade that arise from geography and shared culture. This reinforces the regional division of labor already taking place among firms. Global value chains, in which lead firms organize a division of labor for complex products among many countries, often turn out to have a regional focus. Think, for example, of the electronics value chain in East Asia, and the automotive value chains focused on the United States, Germany, and Japan. South Asia itself is a small but growing part of value chains in textiles and apparel with both regional depth and cross-linkages to East Asia. This piece will focus on four aspects of trade liberalization (trade facilitation, non-tariff measures/barriers, intra-regional investment, and energy cooperation) that go beyond traditional preferential tariff reduction to illustrate both the potential of south-south liberalization and some of the particular challenges faced by South Asia. There is widespread agreement that deeper regional engagement in these areas will benefit the people of South Asia.
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    A Glass Half Full: The Promise of Regional Trade in South Asia
    (Washington, DC: World Bank, 2018-09-19) Kathuria, Sanjay ; Kathuria, Sanjay
    Trade has played a critical role in global poverty reduction. In harnessing the potential of trade, some of the most successful countries have developed strong trade relationships with their neighbors. However, many South Asian countries have trade regimes that often offset the positive impact of geography and proximity. This report documents systematically the gaps between current and potential trade in South Asia and addresses important specific barriers that have held trade back. These barriers include tariffs and paratariffs, real and perceived nontariff barriers, connectivity costs, and the broader trust deficit. This policy-focused report unpacks these critical barriers to effective trade integration in South Asia through four in-depth studies that produce new, detailed, on-the-ground knowledge. Three of the studies are based on extensive stakeholder consultations. Two also rely on tailored surveys. The fourth study, on tariffs, benefits from new data on paratariffs. The report also marshals new evidence showing how trading regimes in South Asia discriminate against each other. Given the South Asian context, incremental, yet concrete steps aimed at tapping the potential of deeper integration are appropriate. The report has been drafted in this spirit. It offers precise, actionable policy recommendations that could help achieve measurable progress in key areas of trade and integration that would be to the advantage of all countries in the region.
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    How Can South Asia Turn Its Proximity from a Burden to an Advantage?
    (World Bank, Washington, DC, 2019-03) Kathuria, Sanjay ; Mathur, Priya
    Around the world, trade has played a critical role in reducing poverty. Some of the most successful countries in East Asia, Europe, and North America owe much of their success to strong trade relations with their neighbors. However, South Asian countries have yet to reap the benefits of proximity. Intraregional trade accounts for a little more than 5 percent of South Asia’s total trade, compared with 50 percent in East Asia and the Pacific and 22 percent in Sub-Saharan Africa.The World Bank’s recent report, A Glass Half Full: The Promise of Regional Trade in South Asia, clearly illustrates the gaps between current and potential trade in South Asia.The force of gravity—the degree of trade attraction between countries—is also manifest in high levels of informal trade. Informal trade has been estimated at 50 percent of formal trade in South Asia, aggregating assessments of various studies covering the 1993 to 2005 period.The large gaps between actual and potential trade arise because South Asian trade regimes discriminate against each other. This can be shown through an index of trade restrictiveness. Based on global trade data, such an index generates an implicit tariff that measures a country’s tariff and non-tariff barriers on imports. In India, Pakistan, and Sri Lanka, the index is two to nine times higher for imports from South Asia than from the rest of the world.Moreover, although the average burden of non-tariff measures may not appear high, it is high for specific product and market combinations in South Asia. It varies from over 75 percent to over 2,000 percent. Sri Lanka consistently appears on the list of product-market combinations with the highest trade restrictiveness index in the region. Barriers that have held back trade and investment within South Asia include tariffs and para tariffs, real and perceived non-tariff barriers, connectivity costs as manifested in the cost of air travel, and the broader trust deficit.
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    Attracting Investment in Bangladesh—Sectoral Analyses: A Diagnostic Trade Integration Study
    (Washington, DC: World Bank, 2016-10-13) Kathuria, Sanjay ; Mezghenni Malouche, Mariem ; Kathuria, Sanjay ; Mezghenni Malouche, Mariem ; Chanda, Rupa ; Dausendschoen, Kay ; Elbert, Christine ; Gessese, Nebiyeleul ; Konishi, Yasuo ; Raihan, Selim ; Rizwan, Nadeem ; Surabian, Glenn ; Veliu, Atdhe
    This is volume 3 of a three-volume publication on Bangladesh’s trade prospects. Bangladesh’s ambition is to build on its very solid growth and poverty reduction achievements, and accelerate growth to become a middle income country by 2021, and share prosperity more widely amongst its citizens. This includes one of its greatest development challenges: to provide gainful employment to the over 2 million people that will join the labor force each year over the next decade. Moreover, only 54.1 million of its 94 million working age people are employed. Bangladesh needs to use its labor endowment even more intensively to increase growth and, in turn, to absorb the incoming labor. The Diagnostic Trade Integration Study identifies the following actions centered around four pillars to sustain and accelerate export growth: (1) breaking into new markets through a) better trade logistics to reduce delivery lags ; as world markets become more competitive and newer products demand shorter lead times, to generate new sources of competitiveness and thereby enable market diversification; and b) better exploitation of regional trading opportunities in nearby growing and dynamic markets, especially East and South Asia; (2) breaking into new products through a) more neutral and rational trade policy and taxation and bonded warehouse schemes; b) concerted efforts to spur domestic investment and attract foreign direct investment, to contribute to export promotion and diversification, including by easing the energy and land constraints; and c) strategic development and promotion of services trade; (3) improving worker and consumer welfare by a) improving skills and literacy; b) implementing labor and work safety guidelines; and c) making safety nets more effective in dealing with trade shocks; and (4) building a supportive environment, including a) sustaining sound macroeconomic fundamentals; and b) strengthening the institutional capacity for strategic policy making aimed at the objective of international competitiveness to help bring focus and coherence to the government’s reform efforts. This third volume provides in-depth analysis of eight different manufacturing and services sectors of the Bangladeshi economy, which help to illustrate the thematic analysis of volume 2 and ground it in sector experiences. Besides pointing to cross-cutting themes, the analysis also highlights some specific issues and actions that could help relieve constraints to faster export growth in these sectors.
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    Toward New Sources of Competitiveness in Bangladesh: Key Insights of the Diagnostic Trade Integration Study
    (Washington, DC: World Bank, 2016) Kathuria, Sanjay ; Malouche, Mariem Mezghenni
    The Diagnostic Trade Integration Study identifies the following actions centered around four pillars to sustain and accelerate export growth: (1) breaking into new markets through a) better trade logistics to reduce delivery lags; as world markets become more competitive and newer products demand shorter lead times, to generate new sources of competitiveness and thereby enable market diversification; and b) better exploitation of regional trading opportunities in nearby growing and dynamic markets, especially East and South Asia; (2) breaking into new products through a) more neutral and rational trade policy and taxation and bonded warehouse schemes; b) concerted efforts to spur domestic investment and attract foreign direct investment, to contribute to export promotion and diversification, including by easing the energy and land constraints; and c) strategic development and promotion of services trade; (3) improving worker and consumer welfare by a) improving skills and literacy; b) implementing labor and work safety guidelines; and c) making safety nets more effective in dealing with trade shocks; and (4) building a supportive environment, including a) sustaining sound macroeconomic fundamentals; and b) strengthening the institutional capacity for strategic policy making aimed at the objective of international competitiveness to help bring focus and coherence to the government's reform efforts.
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    Strengthening Competitiveness In Bangladesh—Thematic Assessment: A Diagnostic Trade Integration Study
    (Washington, DC: World Bank, 2016-07-15) Kathuria, Sanjay ; Malouche, Mariem Mezghenni ; Kathuria, Sanjay ; Malouche, Mariem Mezghenni
    This is volume 2 of a three-volume publication on Bangladesh’s trade prospects. Bangladesh’s ambition is to build on its very solid growth and poverty reduction achievements, and accelerate growth to become a middle income country by 2021, and share prosperity more widely amongst its citizens. This includes one of its greatest development challenges: to provide gainful employment to the over 2 million people that will join the labor force each year over the next decade. Moreover, only 54.1 million of its 94 million working age people are employed. Bangladesh needs to use its labor endowment even more intensively to increase growth and, in turn, to absorb the incoming labor. The Diagnostic Trade Integration Study identifies the following actions centered around four pillars to sustain and accelerate export growth: (1) breaking into new markets through a) better trade logistics to reduce delivery lags ; as world markets become more competitive and newer products demand shorter lead times, to generate new sources of competitiveness and thereby enable market diversification; and b) better exploitation of regional trading opportunities in nearby growing and dynamic markets, especially East and South Asia; (2) breaking into new products through a) more neutral and rational trade policy and taxation and bonded warehouse schemes; b) concerted efforts to spur domestic investment and attract foreign direct investment, to contribute to export promotion and diversification, including by easing the energy and land constraints; and c) strategic development and promotion of services trade; (3) improving worker and consumer welfare by a) improving skills and literacy; b) implementing labor and work safety guidelines; and c) making safety nets more effective in dealing with trade shocks; and (4) building a supportive environment, including a) sustaining sound macroeconomic fundamentals; and b) strengthening the institutional capacity for strategic policy making aimed at the objective of international competitiveness to help bring focus and coherence to the government’s reform efforts. This second volume provides in-depth analysis across seven cross-cutting themes that underpin most of the findings of pillars 1 and 2 above.