nep-ict New Economics Papers
on Information and Communication Technologies
Issue of 2017‒07‒30
three papers chosen by
Walter Frisch
Universität Wien

  1. Digital Trade: Developing a Framework for Analysis By Javier López González; Marie-Agnes Jouanjean
  2. Financial Technology Transformation - Evidence from China?s Value Web By Andy Cheng
  3. Speeding up the internet: Regulation and investment in European fiber optic infrastructure By Briglauer, Wolfgang; Cambini, Carlo; Grajek, Michał

  1. By: Javier López González; Marie-Agnes Jouanjean
    Abstract: This paper explores the definition, measurement, and policy implications of digital trade, proposing a tentative typology of digital trade that can be used to unpack transactions and analyse the issues. Digitalisation is changing what and how we trade: from digital delivery to greater physical trade enabled by digital connectivity. Online platforms mean more small packages crossing borders, while new technologies are changing how services are produced and delivered. Underpinning digital trade is the movement of data: data is a means of production, an asset that can itself be traded, and the means through which some services are traded and GVCs are organised. While there is no single definition of digital trade, there is a growing consensus that it encompasses digitally enabled transactions in trade in goods and services which can be either digitally or physically delivered involving consumers, firms and governments. Unpacking trade transactions along these lines using a tentative typology can help in understanding and identifying issues. For example, measuring digital trade poses challenges ranging from identifying transactions that are digitally enabled to the sectoral classification of services in a transaction, and efforts are underway to better reflect digital trade in trade statistics. For trade policy, the increased bundling of goods and services raises issues about which trade rules (GATT or GATS) apply; trade facilitation is ever more critical for just-in-time delivery and GVCs; and the role of data flows in enabling digital trade may require further attention, along with how to ensure that the gains from digital trade are inclusive, within and across countries.
    Keywords: data, digital transformation, Digitalisation, e-commerce, international trade, platforms
    JEL: F02 F13 F19 F42 F55 F68 L14 L22 L81 L86 O14
    Date: 2017–07–27
  2. By: Andy Cheng (Hang Seng Management College)
    Abstract: With the vigorous development in internet finance, the provisions of electronic platform service for online and mobile payments have become very popular in China. The internet finance has spurred the transformation and promoted innovation of the China?s banking sector, in particular under the policies support and encouragement from the Chinese Authority. At the same time, such development also brings new challenges to the Regulators. This paper examines the current status, regulatory challenges and development of the value web in China.Currently, internet finance in China mainly covers peer-to-peer (P2P) lending, third party online/mobile payment and online/mobile wealth management products. The value web has increased the financial inclusion and lowered the cost of entry for the public, which in return enhance user experience. With the advancement in technology, computing is getting faster and cheaper. Virtualization is driving up efficiency and utilization. Storage devices are growing in terms of capacity while declining in price. Delivery mechanism such as cloud computing also helps to lower costs and drive efficiencies. The internet finance business model is moving to Big Data application, banks expedite to draw close to both internet services and social communication network providers during the transformation process.Information technology has brought a new competitive agent and financial intermediate. Traditionally, banks are the confluence of financial information and fund flows. However, with opening on the operations of internet companies, information gathering and integration become more efficient, extensive and faster than those from banks. While chasing economic of scales, banks in the past have concentrated their resources to those big companies (the head) which can maximize banks? profit contribution. The ?tail?, those small and medium size enterprises with lower transaction amount but high frequency, is being ignored. This provides an excellent opportunity for internet finance to fill the gap. Thus, banks are facing the challenge on financial dis-intermediation during this wave of transformation.On the other hand, crafting enlightened regulation for the internet space, in particular, in relating to financial application is never to be an easy task. It is understood that the current regulatory framework may not be able to keep abreast with the exponential growth in the value web. In view of the challenges, a comprehensive review of the Cyber Security Law in China was conducted in June 2016. Regulators recognize the importance of technological transformation of the value web and carefully adapt the approaches to regulate this new ecosystem in China.
    Keywords: Technological Change, Innovation, Mobile Business
    JEL: M15 O31
    Date: 2017–07
  3. By: Briglauer, Wolfgang; Cambini, Carlo; Grajek, Michał
    Abstract: In this paper we study how the coexistence of access regulations for legacy (copper)and fiber networks shapes the incentives to invest in network infrastructure. To this end, we develop a theoretical model explaining investment incentives by incumbent telecom operators and heterogeneous entrants and test its main predictions using panel data from 27 EU member states over the last decade. Our theoretical model extends the existing literature by, among other things, allowing for heterogeneous entrants in internet access markets, as we consider both other telecom and cable TV operators as entrants. In the empirical part, we use a novel data set including information on physical fiber network investments, legacy network access regulation and recently imposed fiber access regulations. Our main finding is that more stringent access regulations for both the legacy and the fiber networks harm investments by incumbent telecom operators, but, in line with our theoretical model, do not affect cable TV operators.
    Keywords: Internet access market,Access regulation,Investment,Infrastructure,Next Generation Networks,Broadband,Telecoms,Cable operators and Europe
    JEL: L96 L51
    Date: 2017

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