Economics Working Papers

The Economics Working Papers series is a forum for stimulating discussion on research and policy studies that deal with economic and development problems facing the Asia and Pacific region.

  • 01 Jan 2013 | Publication

    Cambodia: Rapid Growth with Weak Institutions

    This paper examines Cambodia’s socioeconomic development since the early 1990s peace settlement, and highlights the importance of strengthening supply side capabilities, growth, and developing stronger institutions and property rights.
  • 03 Dec 2012 | Publication

    Economic Growth, Comparative Advantage, and Gender Differences in Schooling Outcomes: Evidence from the Birthweight Differences of Chinese Twins

    Using data from two surveys of twins in the PRC and applying a model of schooling and occupational choice between males and females, this paper estimates the gender-specific effects of birthweight on schooling and labor market outcomes.
  • 01 Dec 2012 | Publication

    The Service Sector in Asia: Is It an Engine of Growth?

    The underdeveloped service sector in Asia has the potential to become a new engine of economic growth for developing Asia, which has traditionally relied on export-oriented manufacturing to power its growth. The central objective of this paper is to empirically analyze the prospects for the service sector as a future engine of growth. Our analysis of 12 Asian economies indicates that the service sector already contributed substantially to the region's growth in the past.
  • 01 Dec 2012 | Publication

    Performance of the Service Sector in the Republic of Korea

    There is a widespread perception that the Republic of Korea's service sector lags behind its dynamic world-class manufacturing sector. We empirically analyze the past performance of the Republic of Korea's service sector in order to assess its prospects as an engine of growth. Our analysis resoundingly confirms the conventional wisdom of an underperforming service sector. In light of the Republic of Korea's high income and development level, the poor performance of modern services is of particular concern.
  • 01 Dec 2012 | Publication

    Inclusive Growth and Gender Inequality

    This study examines gender inequality in labor markets in Asia and the Pacific, with a focus on the structural drivers of women's labor force participation. Demographic survey data indicate that in Asia's lower-income countries, economic necessity is an important push factor behind women's employment. Also, being married and having young children both reduce the likelihood that a woman is employed. In a separate analysis for Taipei,China, this disincentive effect from young children on women's employment has increased over time.
  • 01 Dec 2012 | Publication

    Is Growth in Asia and the Pacific Inclusive?

    Inclusive economic growth challenges governments to achieve a high, sustainable rate of economic growth and to share opportunity equitably across society. It brings with it an operational challenge of finding an approach to performance measurement that captures the richness of the concept. This study applies one approach to assess the growth experience of 22 developing economies in Asia and the Pacific region. Special attention is paid to 11 economies - Armenia, Bangladesh, Cambodia, India, Indonesia, Kazakhstan, Nepal, Pakistan, the Philippines, Timor-Leste, and Viet Nam.
  • 01 Nov 2012 | Publication

    Transactions: A New Look at Service Sector Foreign Direct Investment in Asia

    This paper presents new micro-level data consisting of individual greenfield investment projects and mergers and acquisitions as a source for detailed analysis of service sector cross-border investment flows among the Asian Development Bank (ADB) regional members.
  • 01 Nov 2012 | Publication

    Developing the Service Sector as Engine of Growth for Asia: An Overview

    The maturing of the manufacturing sector in many Asian countries, combined with the relative backwardness of its service sector, has made service sector development a top priority for developing Asia. Our central objective is to broadly survey and analyze the current landscape of the region's service sector so as to assess its potential to serve as an engine for inclusive economic growth. Our analysis indicates that services are already an important source of output, growth, and jobs in the region.
  • 01 Nov 2012 | Publication

    Assessing Factors Affecting M&As versus Greenfield FDI in Emerging Countries

    A host of external (global and regional) and internal (country-specific) factors affect Multinational Enterprises' Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) decisions. Differentiating the two entry modes of FDI (mergers and acquisitions [M&A] and Greenfield investment), this paper aims to empirically assess whether or not being a part of global emerging market economies or any specific emerging regions affects investors' decisions of FDI flows to an emerging country in addition to various country-specific factors.
  • 01 Nov 2012 | Publication

    Prospects for Services Trade Negotiations

    Trade and investment in services are difficult to measure, and the regulatory barriers that inhibit the free flow of services are hard to quantify. As a result, very little attention has been paid to dismantling barriers to services trade and investment. Rather, free trade negotiations tend to focus on liberalizing merchandise trade.