James Anderson, Ingo Borchert, Aaditya Mattoo, Yoto V Yotov, Wednesday, October 21, 2015 - 00:00

Policy barriers to services trade comprise relatively opaque and hard-to-measure regulations. This column provides novel estimates that reveal that services trade barriers are large but have generally fallen over time, with pronounced differences across sectors and countries. Trade barriers have declined less for small economies and for sectors where initial borders were high.

Alexandra Lopez-Cermeño, Sunday, July 12, 2015 - 00:00

Economic historians tend to explain US geographical development gaps in terms of industrialisation. But by the end of the 20th century, the richest counties had become specialised in services, rather than in manufacturing. This column evaluates how the service economy triggered this evident contrast between the urban and rural US. Market size causes localisation of non-agricultural activity, with the effect being stronger for services, especially knowledge services. Local policymakers can thus foster growth by attracting high-skilled workers to a region, with the multiplier effect eventually increasing the local market.

Gianmarco I.P. Ottaviano, Giovanni Peri, Greg C. Wright, Wednesday, June 17, 2015 - 00:00

International trade in services and immigration are among the fastest growing aspects of globalisation. Using UK data, this column explores the links between these phenomena. Immigrants promote exports of final services to their home countries, while also reducing imports for some intermediate services, and bringing productivity gains to the labour market. In designing immigration policies, it is important that the potential impact on exports and offshoring activities are carefully considered.

Uri Dadush, Friday, March 13, 2015 - 00:00

Magnus Lodefalk, Friday, January 16, 2015 - 00:00

Samuel Marden, Sunday, December 28, 2014 - 00:00

Giuseppe Berlingieri, Thursday, September 25, 2014 - 00:00

Rafael Doménech, Mónica Correa-López, Sunday, August 10, 2014 - 00:00

Exporting goods requires services. This column discusses new evidence showing that the improvement in services regulations that took place over the 1990s and 2000s in Spain substantially increased the volume of exports of manufacturing firms, especially of large corporations.

Masayuki Morikawa, Sunday, July 20, 2014 - 00:00

Innovation is a key driver of productivity growth, but innovation in the service sector has received relatively little attention. This column shows that the total factor productivity gap between Japanese firms with and without innovations is larger in services than in manufacturing. Whereas the percentage of firms holding patents is much higher in manufacturing than in services, trade secrets are just as important in both sectors. These results suggest that the protection of trade secrets makes an important contribution to productivity growth.

Leonardo Iacovone, Aaditya Mattoo, Andrés Zahler, Sunday, September 15, 2013 - 00:00

Service exports and innovation may be a source of dynamic growth for countries in the middle-income trap. This column presents new research showing some support for this optimistic view. That said, it’s clear that researchers need to improve their understanding of how firms in the services sector innovate and increase productivity, and whether better-tailored policies can promote trade and innovation in services.

Barry Eichengreen, Poonam Gupta, Friday, January 18, 2013 - 00:00

Increasingly, services form a larger and larger share a country’s exports. Do exchange rates matter as much for services and they do for goods exports? This column argues that they do. Distinguishing between traditional services (such as trade and transport, tourism, financial services and insurance) and modern services (such as communications, computers, information services) suggests that the effect of the real exchange rate is especially large for exports of modern services.

Klaus Desmet, Ejaz Ghani, Stephen D. O'Connell, Esteban Rossi-Hansberg , Wednesday, June 13, 2012 - 00:00

Will India’s rapid growth in the services sector lead to overcrowding of its cities? This column compares India’s experience to that of other countries.

Ejaz Ghani, Monday, January 23, 2012 - 00:00

Mention China and India to economists and their first thought will be rapid growth. Their second thought might be how differently the two economies are achieving this: China through manufacturing, India through services. This column asks whether that stereotype may be changing.

Federico Cingano, Guglielmo Barone, Tuesday, December 6, 2011 - 00:00

Many European countries face the challenge of credibly reducing their debt-to-GDP ratios. Boosting output growth is therefore an urgent and key political and economic priority. This column argues that increasing competition in the market for key upstream service activities – in particular, energy and professional services – could have sizeable effects on growth by improving the performance of downstream manufacturing industries.

Bernard Hoekman, Aaditya Mattoo, Friday, December 24, 2010 - 00:00

Trade in services is blighted by restrictive policy and is consequently one of the central issues in the Doha trade negotiations. Yet this column argues that even the best offers put forward are twice as restrictive as current policy and will generate no additional market openings. This column provides two proposals that aim to enhance the prospects of correcting this.

Jens Matthias Arnold, Beata Javorcik, Molly Lipscomb, Aaditya Mattoo, Tuesday, October 12, 2010 - 00:00

Conventional explanations for the post-1991 growth of India’s manufacturing sector focus on trade liberalisation and industrial de-licensing. This column examines 4,000 Indian firms from 1993 to 2005 and argues that a key factor for the success of Indian manufacturing may lie outside of manufacturing – in the services sector.

Ejaz Ghani, Thursday, February 25, 2010 - 00:00

Which is the best route to development: Manufacturing or services? This column argues that India’s example of a “services revolution” – rapid growth and poverty reduction led by services – provides inspiration for late-comers to development and challenges the conventional wisdom that industrialisation is the only rapid route to economic development.

Patrick A Messerlin, Erik van der Marel, Friday, July 31, 2009 - 00:00

Opening protected services markets would deliver large benefits to consumers – business, communication, and distribution services in the EC, US, and eight other economies represent almost one-third of world GDP. This column suggests the US and EC should launch transatlantic negotiations in services that would trigger plurilateral negotiations.

Stephen Broadberry, Bishnupriya Gupta, Friday, May 9, 2008 - 00:00

India stands out from other emerging economies because its growth has been led by the service sector rather than labour-intensive manufactures. This column summarises recent research showing that India has a long history of strength in services, and its service-led development may play to historical strengths rather than hindering its progress.

CEPR Policy Research