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  • Author: Frederik Stender, Axel Berger, Clara Brandi, Jakob Schwab
  • Publication Date: 01-2020
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: German Development Institute (DIE)
  • Abstract: This study provides early ex-post empirical evidence on the effects of provisionally applied Economic Partnership Agreements (EPAs) on two-way trade flows between the European Union (EU) and the African, Caribbean and Pacific Group of States (ACP). Employing the gravity model of trade, we do not find a general EPA effect on total exports from ACP countries to the EU nor on total exports from the EU to ACP countries. We do, however, find heterogeneous effects when focusing on specific agreements and economic sectors. While the agreement between the EU and the Caribbean Forum (CARIFORUM), which concluded several years ahead of the other EPAs in 2008, if anything, reduced imports from the EU overall, the provisional application of the other EPAs seems to have at least partly led to increased imports from the EU to some partner countries. More specifically, the estimation results suggest an increase in the total imports from the EU only in the Southern Africa Development Community (SADC) EPA partner countries. On the sectoral level, by comparison, we find increases in the EU’s agricultural exports to SADC, Eastern and Southern Africa (ESA) and the Pacific. Lastly, in the area of manufactures trade, we find decreases of exports of the ESA and SADC countries to the EU, but increases in imports from the EU into SADC countries. While this early assessment of the EPA effects merits attention given the importance of monitoring future implications of these agreements, it is still too early for a final verdict on the EPAs’ effects and future research is needed to investigate the mid- and long-term consequences of these agreements.
  • Topic: International Relations, Development, International Cooperation, Regional Cooperation, Treaties and Agreements, Manufacturing, Trade
  • Political Geography: Africa, Europe, South Africa, Caribbean, Asia-Pacific, European Union
  • Author: Patryk Kugiel
  • Publication Date: 10-2018
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: The Polish Institute of International Affairs
  • Abstract: The approaches of the EU and India to the connectivity between Asia and Europe largely converge. Both the Union and the country emphasize the importance of maintaining the highest international standards in infrastructure projects, share similar concerns regarding China’s Belt and Road Initiative (BRI), and implement their own ambitious transregional transport projects in their respective neighbourhood. Comprehensive cooperation on connectivity may become a key element of their strategic partnership, help promote regulatory standards, and boost economic cooperation. Better connectivity between Europe and India is also in Poland’s interest.
  • Topic: Bilateral Relations, Belt and Road Initiative (BRI), Trade, Economic Cooperation
  • Political Geography: China, Europe, South Asia, India, Poland, European Union
  • Author: Lukasz Janikowski, Marek Dabrowski
  • Publication Date: 09-2018
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: Center for Social and Economic Research - CASE
  • Abstract: Virtual currencies are a contemporary form of private money. Thanks to their technological properties, their global transaction networks are relatively safe, transparent, and fast. This gives them good prospects for further development. However, they remain unlikely to challenge the dominant position of sovereign currencies and central banks, especially those in major currency areas. As with other innovations, virtual currencies pose a challenge to financial regulators, in particular because of their anonymity and trans-border character.
  • Topic: Science and Technology, Monetary Policy, Economic Growth, Currency, Trade
  • Political Geography: Europe, Poland, European Union
  • Author: Marek Dabrowski
  • Publication Date: 07-2017
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: Center for Social and Economic Research - CASE
  • Abstract: The recent wave of financial innovation, particularly innovation related to the application of information and communication technologies, poses a serious challenge to the financial industry’s business model in both its banking and non-banking components. It has already revolutionised financial services and, most likely, will continue to do so in the future. If not responded to adequately and timely by regulators, it may create new risks to financial stability, as occurred before the global financial crisis of 2007-2009. However, financial innovation will not seriously affect the process of monetary policymaking and is unlikely to undermine the ability of central banks to perform their price stability mission.
  • Topic: Energy Policy, Environment, Monetary Policy, Financial Crisis, Economic Growth, Innovation, Trade
  • Political Geography: Europe, Global Focus, European Union
  • Author: Xavier Cuadras-Morató
  • Publication Date: 05-2017
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: Center for Social and Economic Research - CASE
  • Abstract: Catalonia is one of the richest regions in Spain. Until the outbreak of the international financial and economic crisis in 2008, it enjoyed a phenomenal economic boom – which then turned into a very severe depression, from which the region began to exit only in 2014. Consolidating the recovery and making the economy more competitive and resilient, and less volatile, are some of the key challenges of economic policy in Catalonia. Also, to improve the region’s social cohesion, policymakers should make sure that economic prosperity is more widely shared, and transform it into an effective tool for social progress.
  • Topic: Demographics, Labor Issues, Economic Growth, Social Policy, Global Financial Crisis, Economic Policy, Trade, Recovery
  • Political Geography: Europe, Spain, Catalonia, European Union
  • Author: Aleksander Łaszek
  • Publication Date: 03-2017
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: Center for Social and Economic Research - CASE
  • Abstract: Poland’s structural deficit is one of the largest in the EU. While other Member States are taking action to reduce their deficits, the Polish government has not only introduced costly projects, but has also announced additional projects that will further aggravate the state of Polish public finances. The aim of maintaining the nominal deficit under 3% of GDP, as declared by the government, is insufficient because it does not leave a margin of safety in case of an economic slowdown. In the meantime, the turbulent global economy and the structural challenges the Polish economy is facing make the scenario of an economic slowdown increasingly plausible. Dr. Aleksander Łaszek evaluates the government’s current policy through the lens of the challenges that stand a head of Polish economy, and its resilience to shocks, in the new mBank-CASE Seminar Proceedings "Economic policy, the international environment and the state of Poland’s public finances: Scenarios".
  • Topic: Debt, Government, Finance, Economic Growth, Trade, Deficit
  • Political Geography: Europe, Poland, European Union
  • Author: Grzegorz Poniatowski, Mikhail Bonch-Osmolovsky, Misha V. Belkindas
  • Publication Date: 09-2016
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: Center for Social and Economic Research - CASE
  • Abstract: The analysis serves as the Final Report for the DG TAXUD Project 2015/CC/131, “Study and Reports on the VAT Gap in the EU-28 Member States”, which is a follow up to the reports published in 2013, 2014, and 2015. In this report, estimates of the VAT Gap and the Policy Gap for the year 2014 are presented, as well as revised estimates for the years 2010–2013 “due to the transmission” of Eurostat national accounts from the ESA95 to the ESA10. This update covers Croatia, which was not included in the previous updates. While it was hoped that the update would also cover Cyprus, it has not been possible due to incomplete national accounts data. The VAT Gap is a measure of VAT compliance and enforcement that provides an estimate of revenue loss due to fraud and evasion, tax avoidance, bankruptcies, financial insolvencies, as well as miscalculations. It is defined as the difference between the amount of VAT collected and the VAT Total Tax Liability (VTTL), which is expressed in the report in bothabsolute and relative terms. The VTTL is the theoretical tax liability according to tax law, and is estimated using a “top-down” approach.
  • Topic: Economic Growth, Tax Systems, Macroeconomics, Fiscal Policy, Innovation, VAT, Trade
  • Political Geography: Europe, Poland, Croatia, European Union
  • Author: Marek Dabrowski
  • Publication Date: 02-2016
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: Center for Social and Economic Research - CASE
  • Abstract: The European Central Bank (ECB) recently became engaged in macro-prudential policies and the micro-prudential supervision of the largest Euro area banks. These new tasks should help complete financial integration, and make the Euro area more resilient to financial instability risks. However, the multiplicity of mandates and instruments involves a risk of their inconsistency which could compromise the ECB’s core price-stability mandate as well as its independence. The experience of central banks during the recent global financial crisis confirms that such risks are not purely hypothetical.
  • Topic: Monetary Policy, Economic Growth, Banks, Macroeconomics, Innovation, Trade, European Central Bank
  • Political Geography: Europe, European Union
  • Author: Aleksander Łaszek, Andrzej Rzońca, Andrzej Halesiak
  • Publication Date: 11-2016
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: Center for Social and Economic Research - CASE
  • Abstract: Growth in the European Union since the outbreak of the global financial crisis is slower (1) than before the crisis, (2) than the trend would indicate, (3) than forecast and (4) than in the United States. The factors driving its weakness lie more on the supply side than the demand side. The loss of potential output after the crisis was exacerbated by inequalities from before the crisis; fiscal stimulus from 2007-2009, increasing public expenditure despite the lack of fiscal space; excessive liquidity support for banks; and inflexibility of the market for goods at the moment the crisis broke out. The problems with growth may deepen and become permanent if social support for anti-market parties continues to grow. Extremist parties are supported by divergence among the countries of the “old” EU and the slowdown of convergence in the new member states, as well as tendencies related to inequality, in particular the reduction of households’ mobility between income groups. The 144th mBank - CASE Seminar Proceedings consist of the main paper "On Economic Growth in Europe, or, The Uncertain Growth Prospects of Western Countries" by Andrzej Rzońca and Aleksander Łaszek and the commentary "Economic Growth in Western Europe: The Investment Perspective" by Andrzej Halesiak.
  • Topic: Economic Growth, Investment, Economic Policy, Macroeconomics, Trade
  • Political Geography: Europe, Western Europe, European Union
  • Author: Barbara Nowakowska, Piotr Noceń, Michał Surowski, Michał Popiołek
  • Publication Date: 02-2016
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: Center for Social and Economic Research - CASE
  • Abstract: In the publication, Barabara Nowakowska and Piotr Noceń discuss 'Poland’s Private Equity Market: Current Conditions and Development Prospects', and Michał Surowski and Michał Popiołek describe 'Private Equity From a Bank’s Perspective'.
  • Topic: Development, Markets, Financial Markets, Economic Growth, Banks, Innovation, Trade
  • Political Geography: Europe, Poland, European Union
  • Author: Luca Barbone, Mikhail Bonch-Osmolovsky, Grzegorz Poniatowski
  • Publication Date: 10-2015
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: Center for Social and Economic Research - CASE
  • Abstract: This report provides estimates of the VAT Gap for 26 EU Member States for 2013, as well as revised estimates for the period 2009-2012. It is a follow-up to the report “Study to quantify and analyse the VAT Gap in the EU-27 Member Statess, published in September 2013 (hereafter: 2013 Report), and to the report “2012 Update Report to the Study to Quantify and Analyse the VAT Gap in the EU-27 Member States” , published in October 2014 (hereafter: 2014 Report). As in previous reports, it was not possible to include estimates for Croatia and Cyprus, due to as-yet-incomplete national account statistics for the two countries. The VAT Gap is an indicator of the effectiveness of VAT enforcement and compliance measures, as it provides an estimate of revenue loss due to fraud and evasion, tax avoidance, bankruptcies, financial insolvencies as well as miscalculations. As the VAT Gap in this study is based on a top-down approach, it does not readily lend itself to be deconstructed according to industrial sectors or other criteria (territorial, professional), and can be best used as a diagnostic tool in the context of its evolution over time. As discussed in previous reports, the VAT Gap is defined as the difference between the amount of VAT actually collected and the VAT Total Tax Liability (VTTL), in absolute or percentage terms. The VTTL is an estimated amount of VAT that is theoretically collectable based on the VAT legislation and ancillary regulations. This report calculates, for each country the VTTL on the basis of national accounts, by mapping information on standard, reduced rates and exemptions onto data available on final and intermediate consumption, as well as gross fixed capital formation, from national accounts and use tables. Thus, the quality of the VAT Gap estimates depends on the accuracy and completeness of national accounts data and use tables. The year 2013 saw a continuing overall unfavourable economic environment, as the GDP of the European Union was nearly stagnant. This contributed to a slowdown of nominal final consumption and of other economic aggregates that form the basis of the Value Added Tax. Six countries applied changes to standard or reduced rates in 2013, marking a relatively stable policy environment. During 2013, the overall VAT Total Tax Liability (VTTL) for the EU-26 Member States grew by about 1.2 percent, while collected VAT revenues rose by 1.1 percent. As a result, the overall VAT Gap in the EU-26 saw an increase in absolute values of about Euro 2.8 billion, to reach Euro 168 billion. As a percentage, the overall VAT Gap stayed constant at 15.2 percent. The median VAT Gap rose by 1.6 percentage point, to reach 13.9 percent. In 2013, Member States’ estimated VAT Gaps ranged from the low of 4 percent in Finland, the Netherlands and Sweden, to the high of 41 percent in Romania. Overall, 15 Member States decreased their VAT Gap, with the largest improvements noted in Latvia, Malta and Slovakia. 11 Member States saw an increase in the VAT Gap, generally of small magnitudes, with the largest deteriorations in Estonia and Italy. This report also provides new and expanded evidence on the Policy Gap for the EU-26. The Policy Gap is an indicator of the additional VAT revenue that a Member State could theoretically collect if it applied standard rate to all consumption of goods and services supplied for consideration. We provide here estimates of the Policy Gap adjusted to take into account items that could not easily be taxed even in an “ideal” system (imputed rents, public goods, financial services). The results moderate views of the relative importance of reduced rates and exemptions in reducing the revenue potential of VAT, and suggest that better enforcement remains a key component of any strategy of improvement of the VAT system. The results of this report and the underlying data were presented to Member States in advance of publication and discussed on several occasions with the representatives of Member States. Deviating approaches and views of Member States are noted in the relevant country section in Chapter 3. The authors are grateful for the constructive cooperation and helpful input of Member States.
  • Topic: Economic Growth, Macroeconomics, Fiscal Policy, Innovation, VAT, Trade
  • Political Geography: Europe, European Union
  • Author: Monika Blaszkiewicz
  • Publication Date: 07-2015
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: Center for Social and Economic Research - CASE
  • Abstract: The design of the euro area Quantitative Easing (QE) programme raises the question of whether insufficient liquidity in the bond markets will reduce the impact of the programme and lead to market volatility. While estimates suggests that scarcity of around €102 billion may arise over the life of the programme, to date the QE programme has met its monthly targets and bond market volatility has been managed. Questions also arise in respect of the fact that risk is not fully shared on up to €738.4 billion to be purchased over the life of the programme. Partial risk sharing raises the spectre of defaulting central banks exiting the euro system, and existing members being unwilling to bear associated costs, and thus the future of the euro area. However, estimations suggest that, at present, all national central banks should be able to bare losses stemming from sovereign debt purchases under the current round of QE. This report was prepared within a research project entitled Sovereign bond purchases and risk sharing arrangements: Implications for euro-area monetary policy, which received funding from the European Parliament.
  • Topic: Finance, Economic Growth, Banks, Trade, European Central Bank
  • Political Geography: Europe, European Union
  • Author: Marek Radzikowski, Mieczysław Groszek
  • Publication Date: 08-2015
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: Center for Social and Economic Research - CASE
  • Abstract: The present document is an attempt at a comprehensive analysis of direct and indirect burdens imposed upon banks in 2015. The idea to present such factors — which are often extremely varied in nature — in a single study was born out of the fact that these factors are often considered separately, on the basis of various criteria, which causes them to be split into different groups. This approach results in a fairly common tendency for fragmentary assessment of their impact and, more importantly, in the adoption of piecemeal regulations which fail to take into account the full impact of the actions taken in different areas. This applies in equal measures to supervisory authorities, regulators, analysts, policymakers and the media, which means that, in a somewhat oversimplified sense, the above statement is applicable to the public at large. This situation can be most succinctly characterised in the manner presented below. In the aftermath of the crisis, banks require a new set of instruments to regulate the functioning thereof. This is because they are to become more stable, safe, less risk-prone and more customer-friendly. Each of these areas requires a separate set of regulatory instruments, along with the respective subgroups thereof. Oftentimes they are not synchronised with each other and are usually aimed at the implementation of a specific, particular goal to an excessive extent. In addition, there are also “special tasks” such as the reform of the Credit and Saving Unions (SKOK).
  • Topic: Finance, Economic Growth, Banks, Trade
  • Political Geography: Europe, Central Asia, Caucasus, Eastern Europe, Poland, European Union