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
Macroeconomics, Trade, and Investment Global Practice
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Last updated: January 31, 2023
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 - 7 of 7
  • Publication
    Implications for South Asian Countries for Abolishing the Multifibre Arrangement
    (World Bank, Washington, DC, 2001-11) Kathuria, Sanjay; Martin, Will
    The authors provide a simple introduction to the economics of the Multifibre Arrangement (MFA) and use available empirical evidence to examine its impact on exports of garments and textiles, focusing on India. Their review of the basic economics of the MFA shows the discriminatory character of the Arrangement. While exporting countries can gain from quota rents, much of this gain is likely to be offset by losses in exports to unrestricted markets, through waste resulting from domestic rent-seeking behavior, or shared with industrial country importers. Moreover, the restrictions curtail the ability of countries to generate sorely needed employment in the labor-intensive garment and textile sectors. Recent estimates for India of the export tax equivalents of the quotas suggest that they increased in 1999, after a couple of years around lower levels. The authors also examine the domestic policy distortions affecting the industry in India. While the abolition of quotas on international trade in textiles in 2005 will create opportunities for developing countries, it will also expose them to additional competition from other, formerly restrained exporters. The outcome for any country will depend on its policy response. Countries that use the opportunity to streamline their policies and improve their competitiveness are likely to increase their gains from quota abolition. Modeling results suggest that South Asia as a whole will gain from quota abolition, although different countries may experience different results. Unambiguously, however, the gains from domestic reform will increase after the abolition of the quota arrangement.
  • Publication
    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.
  • Publication
    Opening Up Markets to Neighbors : Gains for Smaller Countries in South Asia
    (World Bank, Washington, DC, 2015-01) Kathuria, Sanjay
    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.
  • Publication
    Regional Investment Pioneers in South Asia: The Payoff of Knowing Your Neighbors
    (Washington, DC: World Bank, 2021-11-17) Kathuria, Sanjay; Zhu, Xiao’ou
    Regional economic engagement within South Asia may gain increasing importance owing to several factors that are currently in play, including strategies to diversify global value chains and locate such value chains nearer home. These developments offer South Asia a chance to enhance its low levels of regional economic engagement and capitalize on significant unrealized development opportunities. This report shows that examining intraregional investment and knowledge connectivity enhances our understanding of the low levels of intraregional trade and limited regional value chains in South Asia. Creating a new and unique data set for South Asian investment, it provides a detailed and nuanced understanding of the drivers of outward investment, both regional and global, for South Asian firms. “Regional Investment Pioneers in South Asia” provides key considerations for policy makers in South Asia, which remain particularly relevant in the aftermath of the pandemic. First, it makes a case for regulatory relaxation of outward FDI regimes, based on new micro foundations, grounded in value chains. Second, it spells out details of smart inward FDI promotion techniques and investment facilitation. Third, it identifies distinct cross-border information-enhancing and network development activities. Fourth, it suggests that digital connectivity and continued interventions in reducing trade costs are warranted to increase investment as well as trade flows. There is particular scope to build on the digitalization initiatives in trade and investment facilitation taken during the pandemic. “Regional Investment Pioneers in South Asia” follows on, and is complementary to, the earlier World Bank report, “A Glass Half Full: the Promise of Regional Trade in South Asia.”
  • Publication
    A Time to Choose : Caribbean Development in the 21st Century
    (World Bank, Washington, DC, 2005-06) Kathuria, Sanjay; Corlett, Michael; Hanson, James; Oberai, Rina H.; Tomlinson, Kevin; Ruppert Bulmer, Elizabeth; Blom, Andreas; Jha, Abhas; Brenzel, Logan
    The Caribbean region is at a development crossroads and its member nations must take significant and concrete steps to improve productivity and competitiveness and face up to global competition if they are to accelerate or even maintain past growth, says a new World Bank report1. By taking such steps, they will reposition themselves strategically as an emerging trading bloc for goods and services; without such action, they risk growing economic marginalization and erosion of many of the social gains of the last three decades.
  • Publication
    Western Balkan Integration and the EU : An Agenda for Trade and Growth
    (Washington, DC : World Bank, 2008) Kathuria, Sanjay
    The report suggests that improving and sustaining export performance and thereby gross domestic product (GDP) growth will require sustained improvement in foreign direct investment (FDI) inflows, pointing again to the need for significant structural reform. Despite recent increases, FDI inflows in South East Europe 5 (SEE5) remain low and below potential. The onus for encouraging FDI falls on structural reforms, given the above limits on both fiscal and monetary policy. Deeper integration within Central European free trade area (CEFTA) countries will increase market size, improve service quality, and help attract FDI. Deeper integration among SEE countries such as through the completion of the implementation of CEFTA 2006, the reduction of border frictions through the establishment of a single management of Border crossing points, the regionalization of the rules of origin among CEFTA 2006 countries, and the expansion of SEE participation in pan European/Mediterranean cumulating of origin arrangements (an ongoing process) will contribute to market contestability and the development of a larger market, thereby helping to attract FDI. Deeper integration among CEFTA countries in services could also contribute to improving service quality significantly, thereby enhancing the overall productivity of the economies. This report mentions several areas, in different sectors, where there can be opportunities for regional harmonization and cooperation, including those areas where the agenda is defined by commitments to the acquis.
  • Publication
    Playing to Strengths: A Policy Framework for Mainstreaming Northeast India
    (Washington, DC: World Bank, 2020) Kathuria, Sanjay; Kathuria, Sanjay; Mathur, Priya; De, Prabir; Jensen, Michael Friis; Kunaka, Charles; Srinivasan, Thirumalai G.
    It is widely agreed that, over the past decade, accelerating infrastructure investments in India's North Eastern Region (NER) and neighboring countries, along with connectivity agreements with Bangladesh, hold immense promise for unlocking NER's economic potential. Other global trends, such as the growing incomes and consumer awareness in India and neighboring countries; a rising preference for fresh, healthy, safe, environmentally friendly, and socially responsible products; the growing role of services in manufacturing; and increasing demand for skilled resources are also very favorable for NER. Together, these developments can help NER showcase its strengths in agriculture and services, thereby developing value chains in these sectors, which will lead to sustainable, better-paying job opportunities for the people of NER. In this context, the World Bank, in consultation with stakeholders--government, private sector, and academia--analyzed two cross-cutting constraints that are encountered across all value chains and sectors in NER: connectivity and logistics, and product standards and quality infrastructure. To ground the policy in specific contexts, the team studied four sectors in depth: fruits and vegetables, spices, bamboo and related products, and medical tourism. Playing to Strengths lays out an initial policy framework for NER that integrates demand and supply and shows that, even with a low base in manufacturing, NER can leverage its strengths in agriculture and services to step up its growth. However, implementing this framework will require a different approach to doing business compared with the existing ecosystem and its associated value chains, which are mostly geared to local and/or price-conscious consumers. In capitalizing on its advantages, NER will not only accelerate its own development, but also will play an increasingly critical role in the government of India's "Act East" policy.