Understanding the relationship between trade and growth is still at the core of the economics profession. This column seeks to identify the pathways by which globalisation affects economic growth looking at the case of Belgium in the decades preceding the First World War. It argues that the collapse in fixed export costs promoted the entry of uncompetitive firms into export markets and as the trade component of GDP rose, the share of high performing firms contracted, slowing growth.
Michael Huberman, Christopher M. Meissner, Kim Oosterlinck, Friday, February 6, 2015
Andrea Ariu, Sunday, December 23, 2012
International trade is traditionally thought of as goods crossing borders. Trade in services, however, is becoming increasingly important for high-income countries. This column, using Belgian firm-level data from 1995-2005, argues that trade in goods and services differ deeply in key aspects such as firm participation rates, size and frequency of shipments, entry and exit rates in foreign markets and in growth strategies.
Giordano Mion, Andrea Ariu, Saturday, February 25, 2012
Services trade has increased dramatically in the last 20 years. This column examines data from Belgium and suggests that the change in IT use does not translate into higher services exports. It argues instead that offshoring is a key factor contributing to the rise of services trade.
Jan Bouckaert, Theon van Dijk, Frank Verboven, Friday, December 19, 2008
Most governments in Europe are interested in boosting broadband penetration. This column presents new evidence on how various forms of market structure affect penetration ratios. It turns out that inter-platform competition (e.g. DSL vs cable) promotes broadband penetration while intra-platform competition doesn’t.