nep-sea New Economics Papers
on South East Asia
Issue of 2012‒10‒27
thirteen papers chosen by
Kavita Iyengar
Asian Development Bank

  1. The Impact of Intra Regional Trade Agreement on FDI Inflows in Southeast Asia: Case of Indonesia, Malaysia and Thailand By Verico, Kiki
  2. Certifying in Contested Spaces: Private Regulation in Indonesian Forestry and Palm Oil By John F. McCarthy
  3. Environmental consciousness, economic gain and consumer choice of energy efficient appliances in Thailand, China and India By Kusaka, Wakana; Kojima, Michikazu; Watanabe, Mariko
  4. Stock Market Integration and International Portfolio Diversification between U.S. and ASEAN Equity Markets By Ardliansyah, Rifqi
  5. The Role of Sectoral Growth Patterns in Labor Market Development By Arias-Vazquez, Francisco Javier; Lee, Jean Nahrae; Newhouse, David
  6. Establishing Monetary Union in the Gulf Cooperation Council: What Lessons for Regional Cooperation? By Takagi, Shinji
  7. Increasing popular participation in the treaty-making process : the legislative process of Section 190 of the 2007 Constitution of Thailand By Aoki-Okabe, Maki
  8. Regional cluster policy: The Asian model vs. the OECD approach By Pessoa, Argentino
  9. Promoting SME development in Indonesia By Annabelle Mourougane
  10. Impacts of FTA utilization on firm performance By Hayakawa, Kazunobu
  11. Growth and Convergence in South–South Integration Areas: Empirical Evidence By Stefan Sperlich; Yvonne Sperlich
  12. Stability Price Index, Core Inflation and Output Volatility By Wojciech Charemza; Imran Hussain Shah
  13. Financial Globalization in Emerging Countries: Diversification vs. Offshoring By Ceballos, Francisco; Didier, Tatiana; Schmukler, Sergio L.

  1. By: Verico, Kiki
    Abstract: This study attempts to analyze the impact of intra regional trade agreement on FDI inflows in Southeast Asia. The agreement is ASEAN Free Trade Area (AFTA). The observed countries are Indonesia, Malaysia and Thailand. These three countries have been selected based on several considerations. Trade indicators of Revealed Comparative Advantage (RCA), Constant Market Share Analysis (CMSA) and Net Export (NX) show these three countries have intra trade advantage in primary products. These indicators are useful to assess how effective AFTA in accommodating her member’s trade advantage products into her priority products list. Furthermore this study attempts to assess the impact of AFTA on FDI inflows as a proxy of its effectiveness on investment. This study adopts econometric model of Panel Data Analysis on both the Static Fixed Effects and Dynamic Panel Data (DPD) Analysis to find the impact of AFTA and other variables to FDI inflows.
    Keywords: Trade; Neoclassical Models of Trade; Long-Term Capital (FDI inflows); AFTA; Asian Economic Crisis
    JEL: F11 F1 F21
    Date: 2012–10–19
  2. By: John F. McCarthy
    Abstract: Over recent years, systems of civil or private regulation have emerged across several commodity sectors in developing countries. This paper compares two regulatory systems applied to parallel food and forestry problems: the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) and the Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil (RSPO). Analysing these regulations as attempts to extend procedural and distributional justice into contested forested and agricultural spaces, the paper examines the paradox that, despite successful advocacy campaigns using these regulatory standards, oil palm and timber estates and associated land conflicts continue to proliferate in Indonesia. These regulatory processes provide leverage within bounded spaces, yet they are limited by an incommensurability of values and interests that reflect underlying structural problems. At best these certification schemes provide limited learning tools. Addressing the underlying problems will require legal reforms, effective State engagement and supporting forms of accountability.
    Keywords: Regulatory, forestry, land conflicts, Palm oil, Indonesia, certifying working papers series
    Date: 2012–09
  3. By: Kusaka, Wakana; Kojima, Michikazu; Watanabe, Mariko
    Abstract: In developing economies, consumption of electricity in residential and commercial sectors increased with economic development. In order to identify the factors for effective facilitation of standard and labeling programs, this article explores factors that affect consumer choice to energy-efficient products. Main findings are as follows: (1)Consumers in Thailand shows the highest awareness to environmental friendly concepts, followed by India and China.(2) Chosen labeled products include air-conditioners, TVs, refrigerators and washing machines, but not some popular products such as ceiling fans, electric fans or mobile phones. (3) Consumer who has higher energy conservation perception will buy energy efficient products.(4) Consumers in China, India and Thailand are sensitive to energy efficiency of products, primarily because they lead to less expenditure on electricity. (5) Labeling works to make levels of the energy efficiency of products more visible and thus helped consumers to choose the products.
    Keywords: Asia, Thailand, China, India, Electric industries, Environmental problems, Energy, Consumers, Consciousness, Labeling, Energy Efficiency Reference
    JEL: D12 L15 L68 Q41
    Date: 2012–03
  4. By: Ardliansyah, Rifqi
    Abstract: The paper empirically analyzes stock market integration and the benefit possibilities of international portfolio diversification across the Southeast Asia (ASEAN) and U.S. equity markets. It employs daily sample of 6 ASEAN equity market indices and S&P 500 index as a proxy of U.S. market index from years 2001 to 2010. The paper examines the stock market return interdependence from three different perspectives which are ‘long-term’, ‘short-term’ and ‘dynamic’ perspectives. In order to investigate the long-run interdependencies, the Johansen-Juselius multivariate co-integration test and the bivariate Engle-Granger 2-step method were used. In respect to the short-run interdependencies, the Generalized Impulse Response Function (GIRF) and the Generalized Forecast Error Variance Decomposition (GFEVD) are employed. Finally, to assess the dynamic structure of equity market co-movements, the Dynamic Conditional Correlation (DCC) model is engaged. Results suggest that in the long-run, there are no potential benefits in diversifying investment portfolios across the ASEAN and U.S. market since there are evidences of cointegration among them. However, the potential benefits of international portfolio diversification can be seen throughout the short-run-period. Subsequently, the DCC findings suggest an overall proposition that by the end of 2010, most of the ASEAN markets do not share the U.S. stock price movement.
    Keywords: Market Cointegration; International Portfolio Diversification; U.S.; ASEAN; ‘long-term’; ‘short-term’ and ‘dynamic’ perspectives; Johansen-Juselius Cointegration; Bivariate Engle-Granger method; GIRF; GFEVD and DCC
    JEL: G14 C51 G11 C87 N20 C35 C32 G15 C61 C01 F36
    Date: 2012–08–28
  5. By: Arias-Vazquez, Francisco Javier (World Bank); Lee, Jean Nahrae (World Bank); Newhouse, David (World Bank)
    Abstract: This paper investigates the relationship between sectoral growth patterns and employment outcomes. A broad cross-country analysis reveals that in middle-income countries, employment responds more to growth in less productive and more labor-intensive sectors. Employment in middle-income countries is susceptible to a resource curse, and grows rapidly in response to manufacturing and export manufacturing growth. Within Brazil, Indonesia, and Mexico, the effects of different sectoral growth patterns are context dependent, but differences in sectoral growth effects on employment and wages are substantially reduced in states or provinces with higher measured labor mobility. Consistent with this, aggregate employment and wage effects of growth by sector are close to uniform when examined over longer time horizons, after labor has an opportunity to adjust across sectors. The results reinforce the importance of growth in more labor-intensive sectors, and suggest that job mobility may be an important mechanism to diffuse the benefits of capital-intensive growth.
    Keywords: economic growth, production structure, employment, unemployment, productivity
    JEL: O11 J20
    Date: 2012–10
  6. By: Takagi, Shinji (Asian Development Bank Institute)
    Abstract: The paper reviews the experience of regional economic cooperation in the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC). Conceived as a regional security alliance, the GCC has evolved to become a common market in the making. All six GCC countries participate in the common market project, and additional countries may join. But the timing of introducing a common currency, initially targeted for 2010, remains uncertain, especially in the light of the ongoing euro area crisis. Two countries have withdrawn from the common currency project; another has ceased to comply with a prerequisite for entering the monetary union. But the GCC is not the same as the GCC Monetary Union, nor should the success of the GCC be judged solely on the basis of how many member states end up participating in the single currency.
    Keywords: monetary union; gulf cooperation council; regional cooperation; common market; common currency; single currency; euro area
    JEL: F15 F36 F55 O53
    Date: 2012–10–22
  7. By: Aoki-Okabe, Maki
    Abstract: Historically, the authority to conclude international treaties was exclusively exercised by administrative bodies (or the chief of state). However, recent studies pointed out that the present legislative bodies have come to play a more active role through ratification or the review of treaties in European and American countries. Harrington (2005) studied judicial reform in British dominions and criticized the past executive-dominant treaty-making process as a “democratic deficit†due to a fear that under this system the nation might be bound by international agreements for which a consensus had not been obtained. These studies indicated that people’s participation in the treaty-making process has increased on a global basis, but neither of them provides sufficient descriptive evidence regarding why and how such procedures were established. The present paper therefore attempts to solve these questions by analyzing the legislative and political process of the treaty-making procedure reform in Thailand’s 2007 constitution as a case study.
    Keywords: Thailand, Treaties, International agreements, Constitutions, Treaty-making, Participation
    JEL: K00 Z00
    Date: 2012–07
  8. By: Pessoa, Argentino
    Abstract: Nowadays, policy makers in charge of designing innovation policies, especially at the regional level, are more and more looking at the cluster approach either with a view to accelerate the existing clusters or for providing the basis for the emergence of new ones. In fact, not only as a consequence of their appeal as an interactive and territorially embedded vision of innovation but also owing to a lot of other reasons, clusters are usually considered as key instruments for promoting competitiveness, industrial development, innovation and growth. But, although cluster policies have a potential for generating benefits, the presence of potential benefits from cluster initiatives is not per se a sufficient foundation or a validation for policymakers to get involved, since clustering is something that has been happening spontaneously during time. The key question is whether and how policymakers can add value through appropriate measures, beyond the outcomes that markets and market players produce on their own. While there is an extensive literature that focuses on the cluster analysis, the connection between clusters and policy has been mainly ignored. This paper tries to shed light on this issue, highlighting the key features of both the cluster concept and policy. It also aims at contributing to diminish the existing gap between theory and policy comparing two broad models of cluster policy: the Asian and the OECD approach.
    Keywords: agglomeration; clusters; cluster policy; innovation; competitiveness; externalities; regional economic development
    JEL: R58 R1 L26 R11
    Date: 2012–10–17
  9. By: Annabelle Mourougane
    Abstract: Micro, small and medium-sized firms (MSMEs) are a key source of employment and economic growth in Indonesia. They contributed to the country’s economic resilience during the 2008-09 financial crisis. But many suffer from low productivity, curbing their role in boosting living standards. There are several ways to spur MSME productivity growth over the medium term. The first route would be to encourage the formalisation of small firms. Lessening red tape through simplification of the licensing process and lower tax compliance costs would help. Avoiding excessive rises in the minimum wage in provinces where it is already at a reasonable level would also be important. Looking forward, it would be useful to remove rigidities in the formal labour markets, while moving to some form of unemployment benefit system to insure workers against job-loss risks. The second route would be to boost investment. Clarifying property rights for real estate, and making the information collected by the credit bureau available to all financial institutions would ease access to finance. At the same time, the development of financing alternatives such as venture capital, leasing or micro-finance would enhance credit supply. The poor state of infrastructure, in particular in the transportation and electricity sectors, is also perceived as an important impediment to investment and could be remedied by increasing public infrastructure spending on cost-effective projects. The third route would be to enhance the quality of human resources. The country suffers from a lack of skilled workers, and policies should aim both at increasing the pool of workers and making education and training institutions more responsive to evolving labour-market demand. Indonesia has a long tradition of supporting MSMEs. But responsibilities between the different levels of government and within the central government need to be clarified to minimise overlap and inefficiencies. A rigorous assessment of existing programmes would allow schemes to be consolidated and scarce public funds to be directed to their most cost-effective uses.<P>Promouvoir le développement des PME en Indonésie<BR>Les micro, petites et moyennes entreprises (MPME) sont une source majeure d’emplois et de croissance économique en Indonésie. Elles ont contribué à la résistance de l’économie durant la crise financière de 2008-09. Cependant, beaucoup de ces entreprises souffrent d’une faible productivité, ce qui limite leur rôle dans l’amélioration des niveaux de vie. Il existe plusieurs moyens de stimuler la croissance de la productivité des MPME sur le moyen terme. Le premier moyen serait d’encourager les petites entreprises à s’engager dans l’économie formelle. Il serait utile, à cet effet, de réduire la bureaucratie en simplifiant les procédures d’octroi de licences et d’abaisser les coûts du respect des obligations fiscales. Il serait aussi important d’éviter toute hausse excessive du salaire minimum dans les provinces où il atteint déjà un niveau raisonnable. Dans le future, il conviendrait de réduire les rigidités sur le marché du travail formel, tout en adoptant une forme de système d’indemnisation du chômage afin d’assurer les travailleurs contre le risque de perte d’emploi. Le deuxième moyen serait de stimuler l’investissement. La clarification des droits de propriété immobilière, et la mise à la disposition des informations recueillies par le bureau du crédit à toutes les institutions financières faciliteraient l’accès aux financements. En même temps, le développement d’autres solutions de financement telles que le capital-risque, le crédit-bail ou le microcrédit renforcerait l’offre de crédit. Le mauvais état des infrastructures, en particulier dans les secteurs des transports et de l’électricité, est aussi perçu comme un obstacle à l’investissement, auquel il serait possible de remédier en accroissant les dépenses publiques pour financer des projets d’infrastructure rentables. Le troisième moyen serait de rehausser la qualité des ressources humaines. Le pays souffre d’une pénurie de travailleurs qualifiés, et il faudrait mettre en oeuvre des politiques visant à accroître le nombre de travailleurs disponibles et à rendre les établissements d’enseignement et de formation plus réactifs à l’évolution de la demande sur le marché du travail. L’Indonésie a depuis de longues années une politique de soutien aux MPME. Il est cependant nécessaire de clarifier les responsabilités entre les différents niveaux d’administration et au sein de l’administration centrale afin de réduire au minimum les doubles emplois et l’inefficience. Une évaluation rigoureuse des programmes existants permettrait de consolider les dispositifs en place et d’allouer les maigres ressources publiques à leurs usages les plus rentables. Ce Document de travail se rapporte à l’Étude économique de l’OCDE de l’Indonésie 2012 (ésie).
    Keywords: productivity, Indonesia, micro and small firms, productivité, Indonésie, micro et petites entreprises
    JEL: G1 I2 J3 O4
    Date: 2012–10–17
  10. By: Hayakawa, Kazunobu
    Abstract: The international export and investment activities of firms have been widely studied by scholars. In particular, prior studies have focused on two main hypotheses about firms engaged in international activities such as exporting and investing abroad; namely, self-selection of more productive firms into international activities and learning-by-doing international activities. This paper is the first study that explores these hypotheses in regard to firms’ use of free trade agreements (FTAs). We first estimate the propensity score for firms’ use of FTA schemes, and find that larger firms are more likely to participate. Then, by conducting matching analysis using the propensity scores, we find that the use of FTA schemes does not change employment in firms, but does result in more local inputs used and increased exports.
    Keywords: Asia, International trade, International economic integration, International agreements, FTA, Microdata, Propensity score matching
    JEL: F15 F53 O53
    Date: 2012–08
  11. By: Stefan Sperlich; Yvonne Sperlich
    Abstract: It is empirically investigated whether South-South-regional integration areas such as the MERCOSUR three world regions in question are considered: Latin America, South-East Asia, and Africa. A comprehensive empirical study is done by different panel data analyses based on data from at least one period before the beginning of the particular formal integration processes. The models and methods applied are derived and discussed in detail. The empirical findings shed some new light on an old discussion: for all regions membership in South-South agreements shows indeed a positive impact on income convergence and growth in most of the considered integration areas.
    Keywords: South-South Agreements, regional integration, growth and development economics, income convergence, panel HCA Solow-Model.
    Date: 2012–03
  12. By: Wojciech Charemza; Imran Hussain Shah
    Abstract: This paper examines the relationship between the ‘exclusion’ type core inflation measures and the stability price index. Empirical results for Malaysia and Pakistan suggests that, if targeting core inflation index is to stabilize output, weights of the export-oriented sectors (energy for Malaysia and foodstuffs for Pakistan) should be reduces, in relation to the consumers’ price index weights, and for import-oriented sectors, increased. It also indicates that, in order to maintain real sector stability, central bankers should include the fundamental component of the stock market prices in the price index they target.
    Keywords: Price Index; Monetary Policy; Output Stability; Financial Markets
    JEL: E52 E58 G12
    Date: 2012–10
  13. By: Ceballos, Francisco (Asian Development Bank Institute); Didier, Tatiana (Asian Development Bank Institute); Schmukler, Sergio L. (Asian Development Bank Institute)
    Abstract: Financial globalization has gathered attention since the early 1990s because of its macro-financial and crisis implications and its perceived large expansion. But financial globalization has taken different forms over time. This paper examines two important concurrent dimensions of financial globalization relevant for emerging countries: diversification and offshoring. We find that globalization via the diversification channel has expanded throughout during the 2000s as domestic residents invested more abroad and foreigners increased their domestic investments. However, financial globalization via offshoring has displayed more mixed patterns, with variations across markets and countries.
    Keywords: financial globalization; emerging economies; diversification; offshoring
    JEL: F36 G15 G20
    Date: 2012–10–19

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