Central America, Panama, and the Dominican Republic : Trade Integration and Economic Performance

Author/Editor: Stephanie Medina Cas ; Andrew Swiston ; Luis-Diego Barrot
Publication Date: September 27, 2012
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Disclaimer: This Working Paper should not be reported as representing the views of the IMF. The views expressed in this Working Paper are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily represent those of the IMF or IMF policy. Working Papers describe research in progress by the author(s) and are published to elicit comments and to further debate
Summary: This paper studies the potential for the export sector to play a more important role in promoting growth in Central America, Panama, and the Dominican Republic (CAPDR) through deeper intra-regional and global trade integration. CAPDR countries have enacted many free trade agreements and other regional integration initiatives in recent years, but this paper finds that their exports remain below the norm for countries of their size. Several indexes of outward orientation are constructed and suggest that the breadth of geographic trading relationships, depth of integration into global production chains, and degree of technological sophistication of exports in CAPDR are less conducive to higher exports and growth than in fast-growing, export-oriented economies. To boost exports and growth, CAPDR should implement policies to facilitate economic integration, particularly building a customs union, harmonizing trade rules, improving logistics and infrastructure, and enhancing regional cordination.
Series: Working Paper No. 12/234
Subject(s): Trade integration | Economic growth | Central America | Panama | Dominican Republic | Export sector | Bilateral trade agreements | International trade agreements

Publication Date: September 27, 2012
ISBN/ISSN: 9781475510843/1018-5941 Format: Paper
Stock No: WPIEA2012234 Pages: 40
US$18.00 (Academic Rate:
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