An Assessment of Three Northeast Asian Economies’. Total Factor Productivity

PhD Candidate Dana Gârdu Academy of Economic Studies, Bucharest


East Asian economies have achieved spectacular growth rates in a relatively short timespan outstripping the rest of the developing world. Hence the concern of both scholarly and policymaking circles for their peculiar development strategies. Both their spectacular rise and provisional decline after the Asian financial crisis (AFC) were explained from three major perspectives: statism, neoliberalism, and neoconfucianism. The paper purports to quantify and interpret the pre-crisis total factor productivity (TFP) of three Northeast Asian economies by using the Solow Model. The interdependencies between their TFP dynamics were investigated via a VAR Model. The findings suggest that labour contribution has decreased over time in favour of capital inputs and/or TFP as speedy industrialisation, and a gradual refinement of international specialisation proceeded. However low or even negative TFP during the 1990s signal the emergence of structural problems that decelerate growth, and increase these economies’ vulnerability to exogenous shocks.

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Romanian Statistical Review 6/2011