nep-tra New Economics Papers
on Transition Economics
Issue of 2015‒11‒21
28 papers chosen by
J. David Brown
United States Census Bureau

  1. Current Account and Real Effective Exchange Rate Misalignments in Central Eastern EU Countries: an Update Using the Macroeconomic Balance Approach By Mariarosaria Comunale
  2. The Impact of Sectoral Segregation on the Earning Differential between Natives and Immigrants in Russia By Evgeniya Polyakova; Larisa Smirnykh
  3. Mixed Prospects: Consumption Leads Fragile Recovery in the CESEE Core – CIS Stumbles By Amat Adarov; Vasily Astrov; Serkan Çiçek; Rumen Dobrinsky; Vladimir Gligorov; Doris Hanzl-Weiss; Peter Havlik; Mario Holzner; Gabor Hunya; Sebastian Leitner; Isilda Mara; Olga Pindyuk; Leon Podkaminer; Sandor Richter; Robert Stehrer; Hermine Vidovic
  4. Quantifying the Value of Preferential Trade in Russia and CIS By Taganov, Boris
  5. Quarterly estimates of regional GDP in Poland – application of statistical inference of functions of parameters By Mateusz Pipień; Sylwia Roszkowska
  6. Regional trade integration in the CIS area By Idrisov, Georgij I.; Taganov, B.
  7. Did FDI Really Cause Chinese Economic Growth? A Meta-Analysis By Philip Gunby; Yinghua Jin; W. Robert Reed
  8. The value of air quality in Chinese cities: Evidence from labor and property market outcomes By Xuan Huang; Bruno Lanz
  9. SIMULATING RUSSIA’S AND OTHER LARGE ECONOMIES’ CHALLENGING AND INTERCONNECTED TRANSITIONS By Benzell, Seth G.; Goryunov, Eugene; Kazakova, Marija; Kotlikoff, Laurence J.; LaGarda, Guillermo; Nesterova, Kristina; Zubarev, Andrey
  10. Does Financing of Chinese Mergers and Acquisitions Have “Chinese Characteristics”? By Lulu Gu; W. Robert Reed
  11. Asymmetric financial integration bank ownership and monetary policy in emerging economies By Piotr Denderski; Wojciech Paczos
  12. Domestic value added in exports: theory and firm evidence from China By Kee,Hiau Looi; Tang,Heiwai
  13. Are CEE states successful as venture capitalists? By Judit Karsai
  14. A proximity-based measure of industrial clustering: By Ruan, Jianqing; Zhang, Xiaobo
  15. Happiness in the air: How does dirty sky affect subjective well-being?: By Zhang, Xin; Zhang, Xiaobo; Chen, Xi
  16. Can Monetary Policy Affect Economic Activity under Surplus Liquidity? Some Evidence from Macedonia. By Branimir Jovanovic; Aneta Krstevska; Neda Popovska-Kamnar
  17. Architectural innovation in China: The concept and its implications for institutional analysis By Conlé, Marcus
  18. Is prohibiting land reallocation enough to promote development of farmland rental markets in China? By Shimokawa, Satoru
  19. Strength and Positivity of Religious Identification as Predictors of the Attitude Toward Economic Involvement Among Orthodox Christians and Sunni Muslims in Russia By Maria Efremova; Zarina Lepshokova
  20. Economic convergence and structural change in the new member states of the European Union Convergence in volumes, prices and the share of services, with implications for wage convergence: an expenditure-side analysis By Gábor Oblath; Eva Palocz; David Popper; Akos Valentinyi
  21. Alternative Indicator of Monetary Policy Stance for Macedonia By Magdalena Petrovska; Ljupka Georgievska
  22. Background of the Gazprom Antitrust Case: Internal and external energy policies, and antitrust law enforcement in the EU (Japanese) By TAKEDA Kuninobu
  23. Kalman Filter Estimation of the Unrecorded Economy in Macedonia By Branimir Jovanovic
  25. Transmission of External Shocks in Assessing Debt Sustainability, the Case of Macedonia By Danica Unevska-Andonova; Dijana Janevska-Stefanova
  26. Labor Supply Responses to New Rural Pension Insurances in China: A Regression Discontinuity Approach By Chen, Zeyuan; Bengtsson, Tommy; Helgertz, Jonas
  27. Past and Current Paths to European Union Accession: Romania and Turkey a Comparative Approach By Dogaru, Tatiana - Camelia
  28. Exchange Rate Dynamics and its Effect on Macroeconomic Volatility in Selected CEE Countries By Volha Audzei; Frantisek Brazdik

  1. By: Mariarosaria Comunale (Economics Department, Bank of Lithuania)
    Abstract: Using the IMF Consultative Group on Exchange Rate Issues methodology, we make an assessment of the current account and price competitiveness of the Central Eastern European Countries that joined the EU between 2004 and 2014. We present results for the “Macroeconomic Balance” approach, which provides a measure of current account equilibrium based on its determinants together with misalignments in real effective exchange rates. We believe that a more refined analysis of the misalignments may useful for the Macroeconomic Imbalance Procedure. This is especially the case for these countries, which have gone through a transition phase and boom/bust periods since their independence. Because such a history may have influenced a country’s performance, any evaluation must take account of each country’s particular characteristics. We use a panel setup of 11 EU new member states (incl. Croatia) for the period 1994-2012 in static and dynamic frameworks, also controlling for the presence of cross-sectional dependence and checking specifically for the role of exchange rate regimes, capital flows and global factors. We find that the estimated coefficients of the determinants meet with expectations. Moreover, the foreign capital flows, the oil balance, and relative output growth seem to play a crucial role in explaining the current account balance. Some global factors such as shocks in oil prices or supply might have played a role in worsening the current account balances. Having a pegged exchange rate regime (or being part of the euro zone) affects the current account positively. The real effective exchange rates behave in accord with the current account gaps, which clearly display cyclical behaviour. The current accounts and real effective exchange rates come close to equilibria in 2012 in most of the countries and the rebalancing is completed for some countries that were less misaligned in the past, such as Poland and Czech Republic, but also for Lithuania. When foreign direct investments are introduced as a determinant for these countries, the misalignments are larger in the boom periods (positive misalignments) whereas the negative misalignments are smaller in magnitude.
    Keywords: real effective exchange rate, Central Eastern European Countries, EU new member states, fundamental effective exchange rate, current account.
    JEL: F31 F32 C23
    Date: 2015–11–13
  2. By: Evgeniya Polyakova (National Research University Higher School of Economics); Larisa Smirnykh (National Research University Higher School of Economics)
    Abstract: Using nationally representative data (RMLS-NRU HSE) from 2004-2012, this paper examines sectoral segregation between immigrant (persons with an immigration background) and native workers and its impact on the earning differential in Russia. This is the first micro-level study in Russia about sectoral segregation and the earning gap between natives and immigrants under its influence. In this study we analyze the determinants of the choice of sector, estimate earning differences between natives and immigrants, define the Duncan index of dissimilarity and measure the impact of sectoral segregation on the earning differential between natives and immigrants using Oaxaca-Blinder decomposition.Our results show that sectoral segregation in the Russian labor market gradually increased from 2004 to 2012. We find there are significant earning differences between immigrants and natives. Most of this difference cannot be explained by productivity-related differences between the two groups. This implies that immigrants can experience labor market discrimination. After partly assessing the self-selection of worker’s using the extended decomposition method (Brown et al., 1980) our empirical results demonstrate that the sectoral segregation (or voluntary distribution across sectors) plays a considerable role in the earning differential between natives and migrants in Russia.
    Keywords: immigrant workers, sectoral segregation, employment, earning differentials, labor demand, Russia
    JEL: J61 J15 J21 J31 J23
    Date: 2015
  3. By: Amat Adarov (The Vienna Institute for International Economic Studies, wiiw); Vasily Astrov (The Vienna Institute for International Economic Studies, wiiw); Serkan Çiçek (The Vienna Institute for International Economic Studies, wiiw); Rumen Dobrinsky (The Vienna Institute for International Economic Studies, wiiw); Vladimir Gligorov (The Vienna Institute for International Economic Studies, wiiw); Doris Hanzl-Weiss (The Vienna Institute for International Economic Studies, wiiw); Peter Havlik (The Vienna Institute for International Economic Studies, wiiw); Mario Holzner (The Vienna Institute for International Economic Studies, wiiw); Gabor Hunya (The Vienna Institute for International Economic Studies, wiiw); Sebastian Leitner (The Vienna Institute for International Economic Studies, wiiw); Isilda Mara (The Vienna Institute for International Economic Studies, wiiw); Olga Pindyuk (The Vienna Institute for International Economic Studies, wiiw); Leon Podkaminer (The Vienna Institute for International Economic Studies, wiiw); Sandor Richter (The Vienna Institute for International Economic Studies, wiiw); Robert Stehrer (The Vienna Institute for International Economic Studies, wiiw); Hermine Vidovic (The Vienna Institute for International Economic Studies, wiiw)
    Abstract: Summary The economic outlook in the countries of Central East and Southeast Europe (CESEE) will improve in 2015–2017 with the forecast average economic growth rate close to 3% – some 1.5 pp. higher than the expected euro area average growth. Only the CIS countries and Ukraine will be an exception to this trend. Household consumption, aided by labour market improvements and low inflation, will be the main driver of growth. These are the main results of the newly released medium-term macroeconomic forecast by the Vienna Institute for International Economic Studies (wiiw), revising slightly upwards the growth projections relative to the Spring 2015 forecast. Sub-regional growth trends vary greatly. At one end of the spectrum, the Central European countries are expected to continue their robust recovery with growth rates in the order of 2-4% per annum over the forecast horizon (2015–2017). At the other end, the prospects facing the CIS countries are particularly poor unless global commodity prices recover, both Russia and Belarus already tumbling into a deep recession (expected growth in 2015 -3.7% and -3.8%, respectively), while Kazakhstan is following suit with a deceleration in growth (1.5% in 2015). Whereas economic activity in the Baltic countries suffered this year on account of their exposure to Russia, they appear to be resilient and recovery is still on track with growth in the medium term expected to be in the range of 1.5-3%. Overall, Southeast Europe displays improving, but irregular growth tendencies, in many cases accompanied by macroeconomic imbalances and deep structural problems. Serbia and Croatia, the worst performers in the group, will enjoy hardly any growth at all in 2015 (0.1% and 0.7%, respectively), while growth in other countries will be in the order of 2-4%. The situation in Ukraine remains particularly fragile and serious downside risks persist, although there are signs that the recession, much deeper than originally anticipated (with output projected to drop by -11.5% this year), might be bottoming out. Net exports are providing only a limited, if at all positive, contribution to growth, while household consumption, supported by labour market improvements and low inflation due to weak commodity prices, is coming to the fore as the main engine of growth across most of the CESEE region; consumption is expected to remain among the key drivers in the medium term as well. At the same time, private investment remains the much-needed missing link in the mechanism essential to rekindling sustainable output growth in the CESEE region, and public investment may prove to be an important complementary factor. In this regard, the EU structural and investment funds under the 2014–2020 Multiannual Financial Framework will be instrumental as a source of co-funding. Inflation remains very weak across the CESEE region, hovering at near-zero levels on account of low commodity prices, with the exception of the CIS countries, Turkey and Ukraine, whose inflation spiked owing to exchange rate pass-through effects that followed sharp currency depreciations in 2014–2015, as well as country-specific factors, such as the food embargo in Russia and the rise in utility tariffs in Ukraine. The external environment is only moderately supportive. As the multi-speed recovery of the world economy continues in 2015, driven primarily by advanced economies and accompanied by poor performance in large emerging market economies, manifold external risks also arise that could jeopardise the recovery of the CESEE region, including geopolitical tensions associated with the situation in Ukraine and the Middle East, a slowdown in major emerging markets, normalisation of monetary policy in the USA and low commodity prices (a negative shock for the CIS group). Special sections of the forecast report focus on some of the potential risks that have attracted much attention since the beginning of the year, including the refugee crisis in Europe, recession and import-substitution policy in Russia, the Volkswagen scandal, the economic slowdown in China and the implications of the Greek crisis. With the exception of the CIS countries and Ukraine, however, the CESEE countries appear to be rather resilient to date.
    Keywords: CESEE, economic forecast, Europe, Central and Eastern Europe, Southeast Europe, Western Balkans, new EU Member States, CIS, Russia, Ukraine, Kazakhstan, Turkey, growth divergence, external risks, macroeconomic imbalances, consumption-led growth, unemployment, inflation, competitiveness, public debt, private debt, current account
    JEL: C33 C50 E20 E29 F34 G01 G18 O52 O57 P24 P27 P33 P52
    Date: 2015–11
  4. By: Taganov, Boris
    Abstract: In this paper, we assess the value of Russia’s preferential imports from all trade partners and CIS countries in particular. Total value of preferential imports in Russia (both duty free imports as well as imports subject to the discounted MFN duty under GSP) is equal to ca 12% (37.8 USD bln.) of the total imports, of which ca 7.4% accounted for imports of Russia from CIS countries. We should note that ca 2.5% of preferential imports of Russia under GSP treatment was not imported duty free, but was subject to a 25% discount to MFN duty.
    Abstract: В этой статье, мы оцениваем стоимость льготного импорта России из всех торговых партнеров и в частности - из стран СНГ. Общая стоимость льготного импорта в России (как дьюти-фри импорт, так и импортльготный импорт в режиме наибольшего благоприятствования под GSP) равна приблизительно 12% (37,8 млрд. долл.) от общего объема импорта, из которых около 7,4% приходится на импорт России из стран СНГ. Отметим, что приблизительно 2,5% преференциального импорта России в режиме GSP не ввозится беспошлинно, однако имеет скидку в 25% в режиме наибольшего благоприятствования.
    Keywords: trade preferences,preferential trade agreement,MFN,GSP
    JEL: F13 F15
    Date: 2015
  5. By: Mateusz Pipień; Sylwia Roszkowska
    Abstract: The article presents the application of a linear regression model to the problem of space-time disaggregation of the GDP of the Polish economy. In the approach described, the structural parameters of linear regression are subject to estimation, where the annual GDP of voivodships (regions of Poland at NUTS 2 level) or the rate of its changes represent the explained variable, while the annual domestic GDP or the rate of its changes is the explanatory variable. The authors propose to estimate the quarterly GDP and its changes in individual regions as functions of regression parameters. The study presents the results of GDP estimates and its changes in individual regions. Alternative approaches were subject to evaluation in terms of the level of statistical uncertainty associated with the estimation and in terms of the level of spatial diversity of the estimated values.
    Keywords: Disaggregation of observed macroeconomic categories, classical linear regression model, uncertainty of estimation.
    JEL: C13 C43 E01
    Date: 2015
  6. By: Idrisov, Georgij I.; Taganov, B.
    Abstract: The article covers main stages of integration processes in the CIS area since its formation. We analyzed the specifics of preferential trade agreements (PTAs) in the CIS. We prepared an exhaustive list of expired and currently effective PTAs in the CIS area, taking into account the initial levels of exemptions and the dynamics of their cancellations. We analyzed qualitatively and quantitatively the economic aspects of PTAs. We discussed further integration agenda of the Russian Federation and a role of PTAs as a tool of international economic integration.
    Abstract: В статье рассматриваются основные этапы интеграционных процессов на пространстве СНГ со времени его формирования. Мы проанализировали специфику преференциальных торговых соглашений (ПТС) в странах СНГ. Мы подготовили исчерпывающий перечень истекших и в настоящее время эффективных ПТС на пространстве СНГ, принимая во внимание начальные уровни изъятий и динамику их отмены. Мы проанализировали качественно и количественно экономические аспекты ПТС. Мы обсудили дальнейшую повестку дня интеграции Российской Федерации и роль ПТС в качестве инструмента международной экономической интеграции.
    Keywords: trade,trade integration,preferential trade agreements,CIS
    Date: 2015
  7. By: Philip Gunby (University of Canterbury); Yinghua Jin; W. Robert Reed (University of Canterbury)
    Abstract: This study performs a meta-analysis of research that estimates the relationship between FDI and Chinese economic growth. Our sample includes 37 studies and a total of 280 estimates. We include both English- and Chinese-language studies. Our initial “raw” finding is that FDI has had a substantial, positive impact on Chinese economic growth. Furthermore, our results suggest that the effect is not inflated by endogeneity, nor impacted by publication bias. However, the positive effect is found to be smaller for more recent and better designed studies. When we adjust for preferred study and sample characteristics, we find that the estimated economic effect of FDI on Chinese economic growth is much smaller than indicated by the overall literature, and statistically insignificant. This suggests that the cause(s) of the Chinese “economic miracle” likely lie elsewhere.
    Keywords: Meta-analysis, FDI, China, economic growth
    JEL: O53 F20
    Date: 2015–11–14
  8. By: Xuan Huang; Bruno Lanz
    Abstract: Using a dual-market sorting model of workers' location decisions, this paper studies the capitalization of air pollution in wages and property prices across Chinese cities. We exploit quasi-experimental variations in particulate matter (PM10) concentration induced by a policy subsidizing coal-based winter heating in northern China, specifying a regression discontinuity design based on cities' location relative to the policy boundary. We estimate that the elasticity of wages and house prices with respect to PM10 concentration is 0.41 and -0.71 respectively. Our results are robust to the use of an alternative source of exogenous variation in PM10 concentration (sandstorms), supporting the view that the local effect we measure provides policy-relevant information on the value of air quality improvements in China.
    Keywords: Hedonic model; Air pollution; Labor market; Housing prices; Local public goods.
    JEL: H41 J31 R31 Q53
    Date: 2015–11–16
  9. By: Benzell, Seth G.; Goryunov, Eugene; Kazakova, Marija; Kotlikoff, Laurence J.; LaGarda, Guillermo; Nesterova, Kristina; Zubarev, Andrey
    Abstract: This paper develops a large-scale, dynamic life-cycle model to simulate Russia’s demographic and fiscal transition under favorable and unfavorable fossil-fuel price regimes. The model includes Russia, the U.S., China, India, the EU, and Japan+ (Japan plus Korea). The model predicts dramatic increases in tax rates in the U.S., EU, India, and Russia. Indeed, the increases are so large as to question their political feasibility let alone their actual collection given the potential for tax avoidance and tax evasion.
    Keywords: economy,transitions
    JEL: F0 F20 H0 H2 H3 J20
    Date: 2015–06
  10. By: Lulu Gu; W. Robert Reed (University of Canterbury)
    Abstract: This paper analyzes the financing of Chinese mergers and acquisitions. It is motivated by two issues associated with characteristic features of the Chinese economy. First, foreign ownership restrictions can potentially inhibit Chinese acquiring firms’ use of equity to finance overseas M&A deals. Second, the ability of state-owned enterprizes (SOEs) to secure favorable loan terms may provide them an incentive to rely more on cash financing. We collate data from four databases to obtain a sample of over 6000 M&A deals that were completed during the 1997-2014 period. We find evidence to support the first supposition but not the second.
    Keywords: Mergers and acquisitions (M&As), foreign ownership restrictions, state owned enterprises (SOEs), M&A financing, Chinese firms
    JEL: G34 G28 N20
    Date: 2015–11–09
  11. By: Piotr Denderski; Wojciech Paczos
    Abstract: Over the last 30 years cross-country financial integration has increased significantly. In this process many banks in developing and transition economies became foreign-owned. Using a panel data on banks in eleven Central and Eastern Europe economies we provide new evidence that foreign-owned banks react differently to monetary policy changes than domestic-owned banks not only during financial crises but also in normal times. We embed bank heterogeneity in a stylized DSGE model featuring monopolistic competition in the banking sector and show that such a pattern may be driven not only by a facilitated access to internal market within the financial conglomerate they belong to but also by their competitive advantages. While the first mechanism leads to a decrease of the responsiveness of the banking sector to the monetary policy, the second mechanism does not.
    Keywords: banks, bank ownership, bank lending channel, monetary policy
    JEL: E44 E50 G21
    Date: 2015
  12. By: Kee,Hiau Looi; Tang,Heiwai
    Abstract: China has defied the declining trend in domestic content in exports in many countries. This paper studies China?s rising domestic content in exports using firm- and customs transaction-level data. The approach embraces firm heterogeneity and hence reduces aggregation bias. The study finds that the substitution of domestic for imported materials by individual processing exporters caused China?s domestic content in exports to increase from 65 to 70 percent in 2000?2007. Such substitution was induced by the country?s trade and investment liberalization, which deepened its engagement in global value chains and led to a greater variety of domestic materials becoming available at lower prices.
    Keywords: E-Business,Economic Theory&Research,Currencies and Exchange Rates,Markets and Market Access,Water and Industry
    Date: 2015–11–13
  13. By: Judit Karsai (Institute of Economics, Centre for Economic and Regional Studies, Hungarian Academy of Sciences)
    Abstract: The entire venture capital sector of Central and Eastern Europe is characterised by the increased weight of state resources. The strengthening of public activities is mainly due to the new type of equity schemes introduced in the European Union’s 2007 to 2013 programming period, which allowed the countries in the region to use part of the Structural Funds to develop their venture capital sector. More than 60 venture capital funds undertook to invest more than EUR one billion by the end of 2015, by raising one third of the funds from private investors. The paper examines how successful the CEE EU Member States, with a relatively less developed venture capital industry, were in using government equity schemes based on market cooperation between the state and market actors. Since, due to the shortness of the time elapsed since launching these schemes, the success of the companies financed by such hybrid venture capital funds cannot be assessed, this paper primarily aims to analyse whether the region was able to utilise the past lessons from government equity schemes in countries with a more developed venture capital industry. Similarly to the equity programs applied in the West, the government venture capital programs in the region are also characterised by the short time frame, the mass of administrative requirements tying the hands of investors, the small fund size, which prevents efficient operation, and the limited participation of institutional investors amongst private investors. Compared to developed countries, the unjustified level of benefits to and non-transparent selection of private fund managers and the immaturity of the investment proposals constitute disadvantages in the region. However, the greatest risk of public equity schemes, i.e. the crowding out effect on private investors, is missing in the CEE region due to the lack of market investors.
    Keywords: venture capital, government venture capital, government equity schemes, SME finance, Central and Eastern Europe
    JEL: G23 G24 G28 M13
    Date: 2015–07
  14. By: Ruan, Jianqing; Zhang, Xiaobo
    Abstract: An industrial cluster is a locality with a high concentration of firms in related businesses. Although relatedness and concentration are the two defining features of an industrial cluster, the commonly used measures of clustering often fail to simultaneously capture both dimensions. Based on the product space literature, we first compute the degree of relatedness based on the concept of industrial proximity. Next, we develop a clustering index that takes into account both proximity and concentration. Finally, we calculate this new proximity-based index using the 1995 China Industrial Census and the 2004 and 2008 China Economic Census. The new index predicts China’s top 100 industrial clusters much more accurately than existing cluster measures.
    Keywords: economic development, industrial sector, industrial development, markets, regulations, economic policies, industrial clusters, proximity, concentration,
    Date: 2015
  15. By: Zhang, Xin; Zhang, Xiaobo; Chen, Xi
    Abstract: Existing studies that evaluate the impact of pollution on human beings understate its negative effect on cognition, mental health, and happiness. This paper attempts to fill in the gap via investigating the impact of air quality on subjective well-being using China as an example. By matching a unique longitudinal dataset at the individual level, which includes self-reported happiness and mental well-being measures, with contemporaneous local air quality and weather information according to the exact date and place of interview, we show that worse air quality reduces shorter-term hedonic happiness and increases the rate of depressive symptoms. However, life satisfaction, an evaluative measure of happiness, is largely immune from immediate bad air quality.
    Keywords: air pollution, welfare, psychology, hedonic happiness, life satisfaction, mental well-being, air quality,
    Date: 2015
  16. By: Branimir Jovanovic (National Bank of the Republic of Macedonia); Aneta Krstevska (National Bank of the Republic of Macedonia); Neda Popovska-Kamnar (National Bank of the Republic of Macedonia)
    Abstract: Surplus liquidity in the banking system changes the monetary transmission mechanism, reducing the effectiveness of the traditional instrument, the interest rate. In this paper we examine the real effects of several monetary-policy instruments in Macedonia, an economy characterized by surplus liquidity. We use regime-switching Vector Auto regressions and track the responses of different economic activity indicators to changes in the monetary policy instruments. Our findings suggest that the interest rate channel is weakly effective in Macedonia. The responses to the other instruments are not very sizeable, either, but are significant. This implies that monetary policy can affect economic activity through the reserve requirement and the offered amount of central bank bills. These findings have implications for both the analysis and the conduct of monetary policy in economies with surplus liquidity. Regarding analysis, the implication is that the traditional approach, which considers only the role of the interest rate, is likely to lead to wrong conclusions. Regarding conduct, the implication is that monetary authorities, besides on the price impact of the interest rate, should additionally rely on the reserve requirement and other available instruments producing volume impact.
    Keywords: monetary policy, surplus liquidity, excess liquidity, VAR, Macedonia
    JEL: E50 E52
    Date: 2015–10
  17. By: Conlé, Marcus
    Abstract: China´s rapid economic ascent has been accompanied by brilliant institutionalist scholarship elaborating on the significance of institutional diversity for China´s recent development trajectory. As valuable as these analyses are, their foundation in the transition literature seems to have resulted in their focusing mainly on offering explanations for the characteristics and the (temporary) persistence of institutional diversity rather than on providing insights about the impact of that diversity on such issues as innovation and competitive advantage. This focus has arguably contributed to both, a limited understanding of China´s development model as well as a limited impact of the findings concerning China´s institutional reality on the research program of the comparative capitalisms, specifically on the debate on the benefits and flaws of the so-called Varieties of Capitalism (VoC). Building on recent work on innovation in China, the present paper seeks to provide a typology of architectural innovation, a concept that was originally introduced by Rebecca Henderson and Kim Clark as an extension to the radical/incremental innovation typology, in order to capture the main features of a pattern that appears to be found in a great number of China´s (assembly) industries. After illustrating this pattern with the help of an exemplary case study of China´s passenger vehicle sector, the paper will give a brief discussion of how institutional diversity and the various roles of government relate to the identified pattern of innovation.
    Keywords: China,varieties of capitalism,architectural innovation,assembly industries,passenger vehicles
    Date: 2015
  18. By: Shimokawa, Satoru
    Abstract: Prohibiting land reallocation improves tenure security, but it remains unclear whether this sufficiently facilitates the development of farmland rental markets in China. To fill this gap, we investigate how farmland rental activities are influenced by full-scale land reallocation (FSLR) and partial land reallocation (PLR), which differ in scale and imposition. Employing the instrumental-variables and the difference-in-differences approaches, we find that PLR substitutes relation-specific contracting in the markets, while FSLR complements arms-length contracting. The different impacts are attributable to the difference in imposition rather than scale. These findings suggest the need for further reforms.
    Keywords: China, Land tenure, Agriculture, Right of property, Agricultural economies, Farmland reallocation, Farmland rental market, Rural China
    JEL: O12 Q12 Q15
    Date: 2015–11
  19. By: Maria Efremova (National Research University Higher School of Economics); Zarina Lepshokova (National Research University Higher School of Economics)
    Abstract: This study presents the results of empirical research on the relationship between strength and positivity of religious identification and attitudes towards economic behaviour in a group of Orthodox Christians and Sunni Muslims in Russia (N=820). In order to measure strength and positivity of religious identification, we constructed scales based on the theory of social identity. Attitudes toward models of economic behaviour were measured using methodology to measure economic attitudes based on the scenario approach. The results revealed that attitudes towards three models of economic behaviour form a single factor of economic involvement. In addition, generalized economic involvement was confirmed by a simultaneous CFA in both religious groups. In our study we found that strength and positivity of religious identification are differently associated with the attitudes toward economic involvement. Thus, it was concluded that the strength of religious identification is not conducive to attitudes reflecting economic involvement. Positivity of religious identification was found to have a positive effect on economic involvement attitudes. However, further analysis demonstrated that the relationship between positivity of religious identification and economic involvement had interfaith specifics: positivity of religious identification was positively related to the models of economic involvement only in the group of Christians, while in the group of Muslims, this relationship is insignificant. The results are discussed in terms of features of religious identification in these two groups
    Keywords: religious identification, strength of religious identification, positivity of religious identification, economic attitudes, models of economic behaviour, economic involvement, Orthodox Christians, Sunni Muslims.
    JEL: Z
    Date: 2015
  20. By: Gábor Oblath (Institute of Economics - Centre for Economic and Regional Studies - Hungarian Academy of Sciences); Eva Palocz (Kopint-Tárki Institute for Economic Research); David Popper (Central European University); Akos Valentinyi (Cardiff Business School and Institute of Economics - Centre for Economic and Regional Studies - Hungarian Academy of Sciences)
    Abstract: We analyze four interrelated aspects of economic convergence and their linkages over the period 1999-2013, drawing on the experiences of 26 member states of the European Union, with special focus on the ten Central and East-European new members (the EU10). These aspects are (1) real economic, (2) price level, (3) structural and (4) wage level convergence. Real economic and price level convergence, respectively, refer to the narrowing of the income (productivity) and the price level gap between the more and less affluent countries. Regarding structural convergence, we focus on the evolution of the share and the relative price of private and public services, measured from the expenditure side. As for wage convergence, we address the catching up of nominal and real labor costs, as well as net earnings of the poorer countries to the more developed ones. Our empirical analysis of convergence draws on both the cross-section and the dynamic relationships revealed by the data. Regarding real and price convergence, we show that there was a rapid catch-up in both per capita GDPs and general price levels of the less developed EU-countries until 2008, followed by a significant slow-down. We also show that there is a tendency for price levels to converge towards the trend implied by the longer-term relationship between real per capita GDPs and price levels. Our research affirms and amends the finding that positive/negative deviations from the trend (“over/undervaluations”) have a negative/positive effect on real economic convergence. Relying on cross-country price level indices (PLIs), we demonstrate that the relative price of services does, but their “real” share (measured at common prices of the EU) does not increase along with real income. We show that this is mainly due to the fact that non-market services (in particular government transfers in kind) have a relatively high, though slowly declining real share in the less developed EU countries, which also helps us understand, why net real wages are relatively low in these countries (as compared to their relative level of income/productivity). We construct a model, which is consistent with developments in the EU10. Our findings relate to factors affecting real economic convergence, the ambiguous relationship between economic development and the change in the real share of services, to real exchange rate misalignments within the EU26, and reflect to the notion of “excessively low wages” in the EU10 countries.
    Keywords: economic convergence, structural change, international comparison of productivity, prices and wages
    JEL: E01 O11 O47 O52 P27 J30
    Date: 2015–08
  21. By: Magdalena Petrovska (National Bank of the Republic of Macedonia); Ljupka Georgievska (National Bank of the Republic of Macedonia)
    Abstract: This paper applies a SVAR model which combines different monetary policy instruments to construct an alternative indicator of monetary policy stance in Macedonia. It employs the approach introduced by Bernanke and Mihov (1998) of isolating monetary policy shocks from the whole set of monetary policy instruments that otherwise react to real developments. The residuals from such VAR are cleaned from the central bank’s reaction function and represent true monetary policy innovations. Furthermore, we solve the interdependence among different monetary policy instruments contained in the residuals by developing a structural model. We use the model to extract unanticipated policy stance, as an alternative view on the monetary policy.
    Keywords: SVAR, Monetary policy stance, Monetary framework
    JEL: E50 E52
    Date: 2015–07
  22. By: TAKEDA Kuninobu
    Abstract: The European Commission sent a Statement of Objections to Russian state-owned enterprise (SOE) Gazprom, alleging that its business practices breached European Union (EU) antitrust rules. This paper analyzes the case from the viewpoints of EU internal and external energy policies. The Commission has been using competition law as a tool for internal and external energy policies. Until the entry into force of the Lisbon Treaty, the Commission had been applying competition law in order to materialize an internal energy policy. Since the Lisbon Treaty, it has been using competition law for both external and internal energy policies. The Gazprom case, in which Lithuania pressed the Commission to enforce competition law under the name of "solidarity," is the latter case. But using competition law in such an instrumental way can cause a negative side effect such as disincentive for investment in pipelines, and it can also bring about a fierce conflict between concerned nations as seen in a Russian blocking statute.
    Date: 2015–11
  23. By: Branimir Jovanovic (National Bank of the Republic of Macedonia)
    Abstract: This paper estimates the unrecorded economic activity and employment in Macedonia during 1998-2013. We model the unrecorded economic activity as an unobserved process that depends on tax “burden”, business regulations and quality of governance, and affects cash in circulation, foreign currency in circulation and energy consumption. We then estimate it, using the Kalman filter. After we estimate the unrecorded economic activity in this way, we calculate the unrecorded employment using a wide range of values for the employment/economic activity ratio. Finally, after we estimate the unrecorded employment, we will be able to calculate the true rate of unemployment in Macedonia. The findings suggest that unrecorded economic activity in Macedonia has declined sizeably, from 34 percent of official GDP in the late 1990’s, to 10 percent in 2010’s. Unrecorded employment has declined over this period, too, from 160- 200,000 in late 1990’s to 70-90,000 currently. Accordingly, the true rate of unemployment was likely to be around 20-22% in 2013, which is some 7-8 percentage points below the official one.
    Keywords: unrecorded economy, unrecorded employment, Kalman filter, Macedonia
    JEL: E26
    Date: 2015–09
  24. By: Mikhailova, Tatiana
    Abstract: This paper studies the effect of forced labor relocation in GULAG, and the losses during the WWII on the long-term dynamics of city growth in the USSR. The main goal is to test whether the impact of Stalinist policies and the WWII on economic geography of the USSR persists in long run, and whether, in response to these policies, the long-term dynamics of the Soviet city growth shows evidence of multiple equilibria. I find that WWII does not have a statistically significant long-term effect on city growth, controlling for other factors, while GULAG system does. The growth of an average city in 1960s exhibits partial mean-reversion after the shocks of 1930s-1950s. The dynamics is consistent with multiple equilibria hypothesis: cities that received a lot of investment (as measured by the GULAG population) in the 1930s-1950s, have a higher chance not to revert to the previous trajectory, but to continue growing, while neglected cities are more likely to decline.
    Abstract: Эта статья изучает влияние принудительного труда в ГУЛАГе, переселения, и потерь во Второй мировой войне на долгосрочную динамику роста города в СССР. Основная цель заключается в проверке, сохранилось ли влияние сталинской политики и Второй мировой войны на экономическую географию СССР в долгосрочной перспективе, и показывала ли, в ответ на эти политики, долгосрочная динамика роста советского города свидетельство множественного равновесия , Я считаю, что Вторая мировая война не оказывает статистически значимого долгосрочного влияния на рост города, при учете других факторов, в то время как система ГУЛАГа - оказывает. Рост среднего города в 1960-е годы проявляет частичное возвращение к норме после потрясений 1930-1950. Динамика согласуется с гипотезы множественного равновесия: города, которые получили много инвестиций (измеренных в населении ГУЛАГа) в 1930-1950, имеют более высокий шанс не вернуться к прежней траектории, а продолжать расти, в то время как рост оставшихся в стороне городов, вероятно, снизится.
    Keywords: economic geography,cities,USSR,GULAG
    JEL: R11 R12 P25
    Date: 2015–02–06
  25. By: Danica Unevska-Andonova (National Bank of the Republic of Macedonia); Dijana Janevska-Stefanova (National Bank of the Republic of Macedonia)
    Abstract: In the analysis of public and external debt sustainability the National Bank of the Republic of Macedonia is actively using the IMF’s Debt Sustainability Analysis (DSA) framework. The aim of our analysis is to improve the analytical power of the IMF’s DSA framework, in the case of Macedonia. This paper uses simple framework, based on methodology used in Adler and Sosa (2013), that integrates econometric estimates of the effect of global factors on key domestic variables that determine public and external debt dynamics, within the IMF‘s standard debt sustainability framework. VAR estimation is used in obtaining the forecasts of key domestic variables, conditional on a set of assumed global variables under different global shock scenarios. The results in general suggest that under all shock scenarios, there is negative effect to domestic GDP, however in the case of current account there is negative effect in the beginning of the period of applied shocks, but positive in the later period. Consequently, the expected effect to public debt sustainability is negative for the whole period due to lower real GDP growth. However, regarding external debt sustainability, negative effect is expected in the first year or two due to lower GDP growth and higher current account deficit, yet, in a medium run, external sustainability might not be jeopardized as the lower GDP growth might be neutralized by the lower current account deficit.
    Keywords: public debt, external debt, debt sustainability, Macedonia
    JEL: C32 E60 F42 F47
    Date: 2015–10
  26. By: Chen, Zeyuan (Department of Economic History, Lund University); Bengtsson, Tommy (Department of Economic History, Lund University); Helgertz, Jonas (Department of Economic History, Lund University)
    Abstract: Transitioning into retirement is an under-researched phenomenon in developing countries. Largely, this is linked to a predominance of contexts where – in particular – the rural population remains outside the coverage of any formal pension system. In 2008, China introduced the New Rural Social Pension (NRSP), a program which by now covers the majority of the Chinese rural elderly. This paper examines the effects of the NRSP on the labor supply of the elderly in rural China. As pension benefit eligibility at the time of its implementation is conditional on age, a regression discontinuity design is applied to investigate the casual effect of the receipt of pension benefits on labor supply. Furthermore, as the NRSP is neither means-tested nor conditions on retirement, it induces a pure income effect on employment. Using data from the China Health and Retirement Longitudinal Study, a nationally representative data set, we find that the receipt of pension benefits increases the probability of retirement among the rural elderly by around 15%.
    Keywords: China; New Rural Social Pension; Labor supply; Regression discontinuity; Retirement
    JEL: H55 J26
    Date: 2015–10–20
  27. By: Dogaru, Tatiana - Camelia
    Abstract: Several decades ago, leaders of six European countries with an inclusive vision of Europe and strong courage started a construction without precedent, the European Union. The remarkable construction evolved not only concerning the number of the Member States, but also in terms of institutional and functional development. Nowadays, the European Union is one of the most important changing factor concerning the governance and the policy-making process at European level and not only, and there is no doubt that the EU will continue to grow as an increasing number of countries express interest in membership. This paper reveals in a comparative perspective the path to European Union Accession, and is based on documentary analysis, using strategy-level documents of the countries and the Progress Reports the European Commission provided during the past enlargement.
    Keywords: Europeanization, EU Accession process, enlargement
    JEL: D7 D78 H1 H12 H77
    Date: 2015–05
  28. By: Volha Audzei; Frantisek Brazdik
    Abstract: To understand the potential for forming an optimum currency area it is important to investigate the origins of macroeconomic volatility. We focus on the contribution of exchange rate shocks to macroeconomic volatility in selected Central and Eastern European countries. The contribution of the exchange rate shock relative to other shocks allows us to evaluate whether the Exchange rate is a source of volatility or a buffer against shocks as the theory suggests. The identification of the contributions is based on variance decomposition in two-country structural VAR models, which are identified by the sign restriction method. We identify countries where shocks are predominantly symmetric relative to the effective counterpart and countries where the contribution of real exchange rate shocks is strong. In general, for all the countries considered the results are consistent with the real exchange rate having a shock-absorbing nature. Finally, a significant role of symmetric monetary policy shocks in movements in real exchange rates is found for some of the countries.
    Keywords: Asymmetric shocks, Central and Eastern Europe, monetary union, real exchange rates, sign restrictions method, structural vector autoregression
    JEL: C32 E32 F31 F41
    Date: 2015–09

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