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  • Author: Maximilian Ernst
  • Publication Date: 04-2021
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Korea Economic Institute of America (KEI)
  • Abstract: This paper examines South Korea’s foreign policy towards China before, during, and after the Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD) missile defense dispute to investigate the limits of South Korea’s public diplomacy and soft power. South Korea’s official public diplomacy has the objective to “gain global support for Korea’s policies,” following Joseph Nye’s narrow definition of soft power. South Korea furthermore ranks high in the most relevant soft power indices. Based on the case of Chinese economic retaliation against South Korea in response to THAAD deployment, this paper argues that public diplomacy and soft power only work in the absence of traditional security contentions, but fail in the presence of such security contentions. The THAAD case also demonstrates the utility of traditional diplomacy, based on high-level summits and negotiations, to solve the very disputes that South Korea’s latent public diplomacy and soft power were unable to alleviate.
  • Topic: International Relations, Foreign Policy, Diplomacy, Economics, Weapons
  • Political Geography: China, Asia, South Korea, Korea
  • Author: International Crisis Group
  • Publication Date: 06-2019
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: International Crisis Group
  • Abstract: The Kaesong Industrial Complex, closed since 2016, was the most successful joint economic venture undertaken by North and South Korea. Reopening the manufacturing zone, with improvements to efficiency and worker protections, could help broker wider cooperation and sustain peace talks on the peninsula. What’s new? In 2016, South Korea shuttered the Kaesong Industrial Complex, breaking a modest but productive connection between the two Koreas. Crisis Group’s analysis sheds new light on the economic performance of firms operating at the Complex, demonstrating that the benefits for the South were greater than previously understood. Why does it matter? Beyond helping restart the stalled peace process, a deal to reopen the Complex in exchange for a proportionate step toward denuclearisation by North Korea could produce mutual economic benefits that help sustain South Korean support for talks and encourage Pyongyang’s commitment to peaceful relations. What should be done? As part of any deal to reopen the Complex, Seoul and Pyongyang should take steps to address problems that previously kept it from reaching its potential. The more efficiently, profitably and fairly it works, the better the Complex can help foster and maintain stable, peaceful relations between the Koreas.
  • Topic: Economics, Bilateral Relations, Negotiation, Peace
  • Political Geography: Asia, South Korea, North Korea, Korea
  • Author: Derek Scissors
  • Publication Date: 08-2019
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: American Enterprise Institute for Public Policy Research
  • Abstract: Contrasting China at various stages of reform to Japan and Korea at analogous stages shows China as less successful. The payoff is personal income, where China’s growth in local currency terms is similar to Japan’s. But it is slower than Korea’s, and, in comparable dollar terms, China is far behind Korea and Japan 40 years into the respective “miracles.” In evaluating key contributors to income gains—agricultural productivity, labor quantity and quality, leveraging, and innovation—China failed to extend education in the first 25 years of reform. A recent failure is the explosion in leveraging in the past decade. Other indicators of success roughly match Japan but trail Korea. China’s size makes it important even with less development success. For example, Chinese research and development spending affects the world while being inadequate to offset aging and indebtedness. When projecting economic size, though, trend extension is misleading. Korea and Japan illuminate how innovation and other factors will alter China’s trajectory.
  • Topic: Foreign Policy, Defense Policy, Economics, Reform
  • Political Geography: Japan, China, Asia, Korea
  • Author: Liudmila Zakharova
  • Publication Date: 12-2019
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Korea Economic Institute of America (KEI)
  • Abstract: The New Northern Policy, proclaimed by the South Korean President Moon Jae-in in Vladivostok in September 2017, is designed to boost economic cooperation between Russia and South Korea. However, two years after a special presidential committee was created to plan and coordinate joint economic efforts, few results have been achieved. Bilateral trade has continued to increase with limited change to its structure: Russia mostly sends its mineral resources to South Korea and receives industrial products in return. New ROK investment in the Russian Far East has yet to occur, despite South Korea’s efforts to assist its businesses in finding profitable Russian projects. Seoul tried to convince Moscow that concluding a free trade agreement in the near future is necessary for intensified cooperation, but Russia prefers a more gradual approach to trade liberalization. InterKorean rapprochement in 2018 laid a foundation for further progress in the implementation of multilateral economic projects involving Russia if the international sanctions against North Korea were to be eased. Therefore, bilateral relations between Russia and the ROK can also be viewed from the perspective of promoting regional cooperation with North Korean participation.
  • Topic: International Relations, Economics, Bilateral Relations
  • Political Geography: Russia, Asia, South Korea, North Korea, Korea
  • Author: Jiwon Nam, Kristin Vekasi
  • Publication Date: 06-2019
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Korea Economic Institute of America (KEI)
  • Abstract: Tensions between South Korea and Japan are frustratingly persistent. Despite the shared interests of both countries, such as economic development in Southeast Asia, and keeping a robust alliance with the United States, South Korea and Japan maintain a bellicose relationship because of unresolved historical misunderstandings and territorial disputes. Inconsistent diplomatic policies and lack of strong leaders have made it difficult to prevent unnecessary hostility between South Korea and Japan. Fear of losing support has prevented politicians from pursuing friendly policies towards each other. Businesspeople, too, have been reluctant to pursue friendly policies towards each other, because of preconceived risks of being targeted for backlash. An examination of economic data shows these risks are minimal, and political tensions do not affect business or consumer behavior. Current efforts from both Korean and Japanese business organizations to improve cooperation include student exchange programs, recruitment processes, and public diplomacy. We urge the business community to advocate more to improve bilateral relations. Economic relations alone are insufficient to handle the task of improving a difficult relationship; there is also a need for leadership. In South Korea-Japan relations, the business community should step in and provide that role.
  • Topic: Economics, Bilateral Relations, Business , Private Sector
  • Political Geography: Japan, Asia, South Korea, North America, Korea, United States of America
  • Author: Théo Clément
  • Publication Date: 06-2019
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Korea Economic Institute of America (KEI)
  • Abstract: While North Korea has developed Special Economic Zones for several decades now, these zones have attracted little attention from foreign investors, due to a mix of lack of economic reforms in the DPRK, the tense geopolitical situation, and China’s peculiar economic engagement towards North Korea. With the denuclearization process and North-South dialogue moving forward, this situation could change as South Korea’s announced policy of economic engagement with the North could provide Pyongyang the opportunity to play Beijing against Seoul to maximize its interests and attract foreign investment in Special Economic Zones from partners keen to maintain close ties with the DPRK.
  • Topic: Economics, Bilateral Relations, Investment, Trade, Denuclearization
  • Political Geography: Asia, South Korea, North Korea, Korea
  • Author: Chun In-bum
  • Publication Date: 08-2018
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: Korea Economic Institute of America (KEI)
  • Abstract: As the focus shifted from North Korea’s military advances in 2017 to its diplomatic offensive in 2018, we should not lose sight of the strategic thinking behind gaining the maximum time to develop the capacity to extend its military threat. At present North Korea needs time to perfect its nuclear strike capability. It has been very successful in developing missile capabilities, but it needs additional time to achieve its goals. Starting with high-level North-South talks on March 5, 2018, the DPRK has just gained what it needs most: time. Whenever the first talks begin with the United States and the DPRK, there should be no surprise if the DPRK comes with an improved capability to threaten the alliance. Thus, for an extended period in 2018, as diplomacy proceeds, we should expect a subdued North Korean approach: not flaunting its nuclear weapons and missiles, while striving to boost capabilities for the struggle ahead. In the seven years since Kim Jong-un officially inherited the leadership of the DPRK, his stated policy has been byungjin ( 병진, 竝進), the pursuit of both economic and military development. In conjunction with purges and efforts to eliminate rivals, byungjin may, in part, derive from Kim’s efforts at the outset of his tenure to consolidate political power. Through it, Kim displayed moderate economic flexibility, thereby gaining favor with the North Korean people through facilitating an improvement in living standards. It is tempting to see byungjin as a sign of the regime’s weakness, or as an indication of moderation, either of which would prompt the eventual collapse of the Kim regime. Correspondingly, one might see it as a reflection of Kim’s immaturity, inexperience, and lack of political and strategic acumen. These viewpoints reflect mirror imaging more than a sophisticated understanding of North Korea. Byungjin may be more of a political device and a strategic communications element of a grand strategy, as opposed to the regime’s strategy. It may be a significant instrument in the regime’s effort to maintain elite cohesion and focus the energies of the North Korean people toward productive pursuits that likewise add to the regime’s legitimacy and staying power. It by no means suggests any diminishing of the priority of making advances in nuclear and missile development in order to pose a more serious threat. Since taking power, Kim’s regime has fired close to one hundred missiles of wide variety and range compared to thirty-one for his father and grandfather combined. He has also conducted four nuclear tests, boasting of a thermal nuclear capability. During his 2018 New Year’s address, Kim Jong-un proclaimed that the DPRK had perfected its nuclear and intercontinental missile capabilities, supporting North Korea’s constitutional claim to be a nuclear power. Despite an upsurge in diplomacy after this address, we should keep our eyes on its military advances.
  • Topic: Diplomacy, Economics, International Security, Military Strategy, Weapons
  • Political Geography: Asia, North Korea, Korea
  • Author: William B. Brown
  • Publication Date: 08-2018
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: Korea Economic Institute of America (KEI)
  • Abstract: This chapter takes the perspective of North Korea’s leadership as it confronts difficult economic problems in the remaining months of 2018. The major current and potential issues are listed and prioritized. Short and longer-term remedies are presented, each with trade-offs that affect other economic and policy issues. Given the absence of direct reporting from North Korea, the issues and debates presented are speculative, designed to give the reader a more comprehensive understanding of North Korea’s current problems than is ordinarily presented in western media. Kim Jong-un’s recent diplomatic offensive, reaching out to South Korea, China, and the United States is, in this view, suggestive of these internal economic troubles in addition to the nuclear security issues. The troubles are both short-term—the collapse in trade with China in just the past few months—and long-term, the slow-motion collapse of the communist country’s “command” economy. And much more than in the past, the problems relate to the regime’s unusual and dangerous monetary system, money being a normal issue for most governments but a relatively new one for this still partially rationed, or planned, oriented system. The leadership may have little choice but to let the domestic economy move further from the plan—allowing decentralized market and private activities more sway—than ever before. This would help cushion the central government from losses due to the sanctions and open the door to a much more prosperous future. Without major moves in this direction, inflation and unemployment may cascade into social crisis. It should be noted, that the recent Assembly Meetings, which annually focus on the economy, gave little official indication of policy changes, only a sense of digging in further to protect the regime from outside forces. But just a week later, Kim may have telegraphed an upcoming sea change when, in his address to the Party Central Committee plenum, that he is instituting a new Party Line, socialist economic construction, as the total focus of the Party and the country. Major changes, if they are to occur, will likely come after the upcoming important summits with South Korea and the U.S.1 There is little doubt that the economy in 2018 is in very poor condition, delivering one of the worst productivity rates—productivity in terms of labor and of capital—in the world, but it is important to recognize that this is due not to natural circumstances but to decisions the government has made over the years, and trade-offs it has already made. This suggests that astute government policy can create solutions and restore growth. Remedies of the sort expressed here, for example in liquidating, that is selling or leasing state assets to private buyers, raising fixed prices for state delivered electricity and for water and other utilities, and giving large pay raises to the millions of state workers who now rely on rations, while culling their numbers, would require difficult economic and social trade-offs; one might say there is no free lunch for Kim and his regime although no doubt they are looking for one, even in these summits. The chapter discusses just what kinds of decisions might be made and the likely consequences. Negotiations being set with South Korea and with the United States, and likely more discussions with China, may weigh heavily in how far Pyongyang will be willing to go in these respects. In my view the regime will be looking for: outright aid, payments for pushing back the nuclear weapons program, and premature relief from sanctions, which would only give the regime time to avoid the hard choices needed to permanently fix the broken economic system.
  • Topic: Diplomacy, Economics, Sanctions, Services, Trade
  • Political Geography: China, Asia, North Korea, Korea
  • Publication Date: 08-2018
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: Korea Economic Institute of America (KEI)
  • Abstract: In the aftermath of Donald Trump’s election and immediate pullout from the TPP, a scramble ensued over how to proceed with constructing a regional trade order centered on East Asia. For China this brought closer scrutiny of its pursuit of the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI). In the case of Japan, questions followed about what to do with the residue of TPP. Others, notably countries in Southeast Asia, were left contemplating the balance between eastern exclusive regionalism and the western presence in regionalism. In the background were efforts in South Asia aimed at advancing economic integration with East Asia. A kind of free-for-all was in progress without the moorings that had been lost after the paradigm of competition between a U.S.-led TPP and a China hub-and-spokes BRI no longer was guiding the strategic calculations of Asian countries. Then, in March 2018 came Trump’s disruptive tariffs, threatening to set a trade war in motion. Four chapters explore the challenge of advancing a regional trade order in East Asia in the new circumstances of 2017-18. Tu Xinquan in Chapter 10 questions whether BRI is a path toward regionalism, delving deeply into the Chinese strategy for BRI. T.J. Pempel follows in Chapter 11 by exploring Japan’s thinking about TPP and the process of refocusing on TPP- 11 following the U.S. withdrawal. Chapter 12 by Sanchita Basu Das offers a hopeful ASEAN perspective on economic regionalism. Finally, in Chapter 13 Pradumna Bickram Rana traces thinking about re-energizing economic integration between South Asia and East Asia. With no finality to the RCEP talks and the recently concluded TPP-11 pact still taking shape and Trump’s “America First” trade policy casting a dark shadow, we aim to capture signs of a new trade order at a time of flux.
  • Topic: Economics, Regional Integration, Trade
  • Political Geography: Japan, China, East Asia, Asia, Korea
  • Author: Choong Yong Ahn
  • Publication Date: 05-2018
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Korea Economic Institute of America (KEI)
  • Abstract: The Moon Jae-in administration in South Korea has taken a two-pronged approach to ensure urgently needed job creation and inclusive growth. Although measures towards each set of economic policies have been implemented since Moon took office in May 2017, what’s often referred to as “incomeled growth” has been prioritized over innovative growth. The income-led growth model is largely driven by domestic consumption through pro-labor distributional policies including a wage hike to raise the disposable income of low- and middleincome individuals, thereby triggering equity with growth. Focused more on the supply side, the innovative growth model encourages startups to create jobs and innovate. It is a great challenge for Korea to pursue growth and equity through both sets of policies. After a year in office, the Moon administration’s economic agenda, often referred to as J-nomics, has not fully produced the intended policy objectives in terms of job creation and growth. To mitigate a declining potential growth rate and pursue robust and inclusive growth, the twin policies need to be rebalanced, reprioritized, and interconnected in a mutually reinforcing manner to empower the private sector to play a bigger role. As a mid-sized open economy, Korea requires global market competitiveness on the supply side to create decent jobs by buoying entrepreneurship and innovation. Structural reforms in the labor market combined with deregulations necessary for the advent of disruptive 4th-industrial-revolution technologies must be expedited. Furthermore, a new business ecosystem in which win-win collaborations between globally-oriented conglomerates and small businesses must be encouraged to replace a zero-sum business culture.
  • Topic: Economics, Science and Technology, Global Markets, Economic Growth
  • Political Geography: Asia, South Korea, Korea
  • Author: Jin Kyo Suh
  • Publication Date: 05-2018
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Korea Economic Institute of America (KEI)
  • Abstract: Beef trade was a major sticking point between the United States and South Korea in ratifying the KORUS FTA. The outcome of the renegotiations that led to the March 2018 agreement in principle did not impact sections pertaining to beef in the agreement, though looking at how beef trade would have been affected should the talks have failed highlights the importance of the agreement to both countries, but particularly the United States. This paper estimates the demand for imported beef in South Korea by source and product by using the production version of the Rotterdam demand system and assesses what the potential impact of U.S. withdrawal from the KORUS FTA would have been on beef trade between the U.S. and South Korea. The results suggest U.S. withdrawal from the KORUS FTA would have resulted in a considerable increase in Australian beef exports to South Korea, largely at the expense of U.S. beef. This is because there is significant price competition between beef imports from the United States and Australia. Furthermore, Korean consumers substitute American beef for Australian beef when the relative price of U.S. beef rises.
  • Topic: Economics, Treaties and Agreements, Exports, Trade Policy
  • Political Geography: Asia, South Korea, North America, Korea, United States of America
  • Author: Li Si-qi, Tu Xin-quan, Liu Bin
  • Publication Date: 07-2017
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: Korea Economic Institute of America (KEI)
  • Abstract: The article focuses on the China-Korea FTA, analyzing the background of China-Korea bilateral economic relations, the characteristics of the China-Korea FTA and more importantly, the implications and future prospect of this free trade pact. So far, the China-Korea FTA is considered to be the most comprehensive compared with China's previous FTAs and may be the largest in trade terms among all the FTAs concluded by Korea and China, playing a positive role in advancing economic integration in the Asia-Pacific region. However, with lots of exceptions to tariff elimination and market access, as well as a 20-year transition period, the present version of the China-Korea FTA is far from the best in terms of the depth of liberalization and the scope of obligations on trade and investment rules. The recent bilateral diplomatic tensions due to the decision of deploying the THAAD missile system by the Korean government may also jeopardize bilateral economic ties between China and Korea, and further increase uncertainties of the China-Korea FTA. It remains to be seen whether the Chinese and Korean governments will handle this issue smoothly under the present sensitive political atmosphere and achieve substantial progress in follow-up FTA negotiations on services and investment.
  • Topic: Diplomacy, Economics, Bilateral Relations, Regional Integration
  • Political Geography: China, Asia, South Korea, Korea
  • Author: Kim Gyu-Pan
  • Publication Date: 07-2017
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: Korea Economic Institute of America (KEI)
  • Abstract: Korea's economic relations with Japan, which were re-established as a result of the diplomatic normalization between the two countries in 1965, have transformed from dependent to interdependent. The extraordinary economic growth that Korea accomplished during the post-war period was largely due to intermediate goods imported from Japan, and technical cooperation and joint ventures with Japanese enterprises. However, in the 21st century, the dependence of Korean firms on Japanese technology has somewhat declined as global enterprises have appeared in Korea. In contrast to the post-war economic boom, Japanese companies now prefer to cooperate with their Korean counterparts, resulting in joint business ventures between Korean and Japanese firms being continuously developed. This reversal in the economic ties between Korea and Japan can be attributed to several reasons including: the rise of China; Japan's two lost decades; and Korea's push for domestic structural reform as well as economic globalization after the Asian Currency Crisis of 1997. Nonetheless, the issue of Korea's trade imbalance with Japan, which was established during the post-war period, still remains thereby serving as a serious impediment to FTA negotiations between Korea and Japan as well as Korea's TPP negotiations.
  • Topic: Economics, History, Bilateral Relations, Trade
  • Political Geography: Japan, Asia, South Korea, Korea
  • Author: Lim Soo-ho, Hong Seok-ki
  • Publication Date: 07-2017
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: Korea Economic Institute of America (KEI)
  • Abstract: Since the collapse of industry during the 'Arduous March' (1995-1997), Pyongyang has continuously launched reconstruction plans but has failed to see a rebound. The key is to restore industrial linkages; however, the DPRK allocated a majority of state investment to the defense industry under the 'Military First Economic Policy.' As long as the 'strategic sector' retains priority, a sound outcome seems to be out of reach. In reality, North Korea's comparative advantage lies on labor-intensive business, with abundant labor forces at a low cost. After unification, such industries will have bright prospects with technology and capital not only from South Korea, but also from China and Japan. The economic integration scenario of the two Koreas -- whether radical or gradual -- will decide industrial policies for the upper half of the peninsula in the post-unification era.
  • Topic: Economics, Science and Technology, History, Reconstruction, Industry
  • Political Geography: Japan, China, Asia, South Korea, North Korea, Korea
  • Author: Younsung Kim
  • Publication Date: 11-2017
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Korea Economic Institute of America (KEI)
  • Abstract: Companies in industrialized nations have embraced environmental protection and sustainability as part of their international competitive strategies. The trend toward proactive environmental management has also grown in Korean firms, as consumers, investors, local policy networks, and the Lee Myung-bak administration’s green growth policy initiatives have provided an impetus for the greening of South Korean firms. However, despite heightened firm interest in environmental responsibility, there is little understanding of which types of sustainable activities Korean firms have implemented. Analyzing sustainability reports from 30 large Korean firms, this study finds that Korean firms are more likely to employ lower-order sustainability practices that can help prevent pollution and modify existing processes and products to reduce environmental impact. However, their focus on innovating clean technologies seems to be limited. To transition to a low-carbon, green economy, the Korean government should consider green growth policies that foster firms’ investments in higher-order sustainability strategies and scale up corporate sustainability more broadly in the Korean business community.
  • Topic: Economics, Energy Policy, Environment, Renewable Energy, Sustainability, Domestic Policy
  • Political Geography: Asia, South Korea, Korea
  • Author: Jeffrey Schott, Eujiin Jung, Cathleen Cimino-Isaacs
  • Publication Date: 12-2015
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: Peterson Institute for International Economics
  • Abstract: Of all the free trade agreements (FTAs) concluded by Korea with its major trading partners since the turn of the century, the Korea-China FTA may be the largest in trade terms. It is, however, far from the best in terms of the depth of liberalization and the scope of obligations on trade and investment policies. Korea and China agreed to liberalize a large share of bilateral trade within 20 years, but both sides incorporated extensive exceptions to basic tariff reforms and deferred important market access negotiations on services and investment for several years. Political interests trumped economic objectives, and the negotiated outcome cut too many corners to achieve such a comprehensive result. The limited outcome in the Korea-China talks has two clear implications for economic integration among the northeast Asian countries. First, prospects for the ongoing China-Japan-Korea talks will be limited and unlikely to exceed the Korea-China outcome. Second, Korea and Japan need to strengthen their bilateral leg of the northeast Asian trilateral and the best way is by negotiating a deal in the context of the Trans-Pacific Partnership.
  • Topic: Economics, International Trade and Finance, Politics, Bilateral Relations
  • Political Geography: United States, China, Asia, Korea
  • Author: Jeffrey Schott, Euijin Jung, Cathleen Cimino-Isaacs
  • Publication Date: 12-2015
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: Peterson Institute for International Economics
  • Abstract: Of all the free trade agreements (FTAs) concluded by Korea with its major trading partners since the turn of the century, the Korea-China FTA may be the largest in trade terms. It is, however, far from the best in terms of the depth of liberalization and the scope of obligations on trade and investment policies. Korea and China agreed to liberalize a large share of bilateral trade within 20 years, but both sides incorporated extensive exceptions to basic tariff reforms and deferred important market access negotiations on services and investment for several years. Political interests trumped economic objectives, and the negotiated outcome cut too many corners to achieve such a comprehensive result. The limited outcome in the Korea-China talks has two clear implications for economic integration among the northeast Asian countries. First, prospects for the ongoing China-Japan-Korea talks will be limited and unlikely to exceed the Korea-China outcome. Second, Korea and Japan need to strengthen their bilateral leg of the northeast Asian trilateral and the best way is by negotiating a deal in the context of the Trans-Pacific Partnership.
  • Topic: Economics, International Trade and Finance, Markets, Treaties and Agreements, Bilateral Relations
  • Political Geography: Korea
  • Author: Marcus Noland
  • Publication Date: 11-2015
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: East-West Center
  • Abstract: Unconventional monetary policy (UMP) has had predictable effects. How exit plays out is scenario-dependent. Quantitative easing has had the predictable effect of encouraging currency depreciation and some partner countries may have attempted to offset these exchange rate effects. Korea presents a particularly interesting case: it is relatively small and relatively open and integrated, in both trade and financial terms, with the United States and Japan, two practitioners of UMP. Authorities have acted to limit the won's appreciation primarily against the currency of China, not the US or Japan. Nevertheless, Korea's policy is a source of tension with the US. Under legislation currently being considered, the currency manipulation issue could potentially interfere with Korean efforts to attract direct investment from the US and create an obstacle to Korea joining the Trans-Pacific Partnership.
  • Topic: Economics, International Trade and Finance, Markets, Monetary Policy, Financial Markets
  • Political Geography: Korea, Asia-Pacific
  • Author: Jeffrey J. Schott, Cathleen Cimino
  • Publication Date: 09-2014
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: Peterson Institute for International Economics
  • Abstract: The negotiation of the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), a megaregional agreement to lower barriers to trade and investment and promote economic integration in the Asia-Pacific region, has been a dynamic process with a number of countries joining the talks in midstream. Since negotiations began in March 2010, participation in the TPP talks has expanded several times to include Malaysia (October 2010), Vietnam (December 2010), Canada and Mexico (October 2012), and Japan (July 2013). In November 2013, Korea announced its interest in participating in the TPP and began consulting with the countries involved. The TPP now has 12 participants. Korea is still considering whether to become lucky 13.
  • Topic: Economics, International Trade and Finance, Bilateral Relations
  • Political Geography: Malaysia, Canada, Asia, Vietnam, Korea, Mexico
  • Author: Vinícius Rodrigues Vieira
  • Publication Date: 04-2014
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Journal of International Relations and Development
  • Institution: Central and East European International Studies Association
  • Abstract: Between the 1960s and the 1970s, Brazil and South Korea adopted similar strategies of development under authoritarian rule: an import substitution industrialisation (ISI) programme later replaced by export strategies (ES), namely, export promotion (EP) in Brazil and export-led growth (EG) in Korea. However, whereas Korea was successful, Brazil began the 1980s facing socio-economic crisis because of imbalances in external accounts. Through the analysis of institutions, organisations, and economic indicators, I conclude that the social-political structure (defined as the institutions and organisations within the economic, political, and social levels) of each nation shaped differently the opportunities given by changes in the organisation of the domestic economy and international contexts between 1945 and 1985. The social-political institutions, which last longer than organisations, come mainly from Portuguese (in the case of Brazil) and Japanese (in the case of South Korea) colonisation. Therefore, the impact of historical junctures, such as economic transformations influenced by changes at the international level, might be restricted to organisations at the domestic level as institutions related to pre-industrial periods persist and constrain the reach of modernisation.
  • Topic: Development, Economics, Politics
  • Political Geography: South Korea, Brazil, Korea
  • Author: Young Kil Park
  • Publication Date: 12-2013
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Centre for International Governance Innovation
  • Abstract: South Korea's interest in the Arctic reached a peak on May 15, 2013, when the country obtained permanent observer status in the Arctic Council. The country's interest in the Arctic began in the 2000s, following reports of new sea route created by accelerated thawing in the Arctic due to increasing temperatures. A South Korean shipping company completed Korea's first commercial freight voyage via the Arctic Ocean on October 22, 2013, after taking 35 days to make the journey from Ust-Luga port of Russia to Gwangyang port of Korea. This paper examines South Korea's interest and involvement in the Arctic and analyzes its challenges. The paper summarizes the Arctic-related activities the country has pursued so far; examines specific interests in the fields of science, sea routes and hydrocarbon resources, fishing and governance; and, finally, evaluates the challenges ahead. South Korea has made significant progress in entering the Arctic Ocean but many grave challenges must be addressed before the Arctic can become the source of economic prosperity.
  • Topic: Economics, Oil, Maritime Commerce, Natural Resources, Governance
  • Political Geography: Russia, Israel, South Korea, Korea
  • Author: Yoon-Shik Park
  • Publication Date: 11-2013
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: International Journal of Korean Studies
  • Institution: International Council on Korean Studies
  • Abstract: Four and a half years after the agreement between the U.S and Korean governments, the U.S.-Korea Free Trade Agreement (KORUS FTA or KORUS) was finally approved by both the U.S. Congress and the Korean Parliament in late 2011 and has been in effect since March 15, 2012. KORUS is the most important free trade agreement for the U.S. since the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) that came into force in 1994. Korea has become an important trade partner of the United States, for which Korea is the 7th largest trading partner, 5th largest export market for agricultural products, 2nd largest market for U.S. services in Asia, and 10th largest market for information technology products. The total U.S.-Korea trade volume tripled over just two decades between 1990 and 2011. However, the relative importance of two countries' bilateral trade has declined in recent decades. This trendline decline is expected to be reversed in the coming years because of the KORUS. Several studies have been conducted to estimate the potential effects of KORUS. The U.S. International Trade Commission (ITC) study in 2007 estimated that U.S. GDP would increase by $10 to $12 billion (about 0.1%) and U.S. exports would rise by $9.7 billion to $10.9 billion, if KORUS were fully implemented. A University of Michigan study, commissioned by the Korea Economic Institute, estimated that U.S. GDP would increase by $25 billion (0.14% of GDP). This estimate was larger than the US ITC result, in part because the study included the effects of liberalization in services trade. The Korea Institute for International Economic Policy (KIEP) estimated the potential economic impact of KORUS on Korea's economy. The study concluded that KORUS would lead to an increase of 0.42% to 0.59% in Korean GDP according to a static analysis and 1.99% to 2.27% according to a dynamic analysis. A study by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce in 2009 found that America would suffer a net loss of more than 345,000 jobs, $35 billion in lost export sales and U.S. GDP failing to grow by $40 billion, if KORUS were NOT implemented while the European Union and Canada moved forward to implement FTAs with Korea.
  • Topic: Economics
  • Political Geography: United States, Korea
  • Author: Walter Lohman
  • Publication Date: 06-2012
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: The Journal of International Security Affairs
  • Institution: Jewish Institute for National Security Affairs
  • Abstract: In the course of two months in the fall of 2011, the President and his administration—particularly the Secretary of State—conducted a political and diplomatic offensive to prove American staying power in Asia. It marked a 180-degree turn from where the White House had begun three years earlier. The fall offensive began with the long-awaited passage of the Korea-U.S. FTA (KORUS), an agreement of major economic importance. After years of accumulated opportunity costs, in October, the administration finally pushed the agreement forward and arranged for South Korean President Lee Myun-bak to be in Washington for the occasion of its passage. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton framed the new approach in her November “America's Pacific Century” speech, wherein she declared the Administration's “Asia Pivot.”1 President Obama gave the approach authority and economic substance at APEC, where the U.S. secured a game-changing commitment from Japan to join the Transpacific Partnership trade pact (TPP). The President then embarked on his third visit to the Asia Pacific. In Australia, he announced new training rotations of up to 2,500 U.S. Marines through Australia's northern shore, a move with obvious implications for the security of our allies and sea lanes, and in Indonesia, he became the first American president to participate in the East Asian Summit (EAS). At the EAS meeting of 18 regional leaders, President Obama raised the importance of maritime security and freedom of navigation and “expressed strong opposition to the threat or use of force by any party to advance its territorial or maritime claims or interfere in legitimate economic activity”—thereby tying American interests to regional concerns about China. For her part, Secretary Clinton headed to Manila to commemorate the 60th anniversary of the U.S.-Philippines Mutual Defense Treaty (MDT)—and then on to America's other treaty ally in Southeast Asia, Thailand. In Manila Bay, she signed a reaffirmation of the U.S.-Philippines MDT on the deck of a U.S. Navy destroyer and essentially declared America ready to “fight” for the Philippines. She also announced the dispatch to Manila of the second (of what will likely be four) refurbished coast guard cutters. En route to Indonesia, President Obama phoned long-suffering Burmese human rights icon Aung San Suu Kyi to get her blessing for a Burma visit from Secretary Clinton. Clinton arrived in Burma by the end of November, meeting Suu Kyi and the Burmese president and beginning a careful, “action for action” process of normalization that could have major implications for the U.S. strategic position in the region. The Chinese have long taken advantage of Burma's isolation from the U.S. If Burmese political reform proves to be real, it will offer an opportunity for the U.S. to reassert itself there. It will also remove a roadblock in America's relationship with the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) with which it has long disagreed on Burma. A democratic Burma would tip the scales in ASEAN—a hodgepodge of governing systems—in favor of democracy, a state of play that improves the sustainability of American engagement.
  • Topic: Security, Economics, Human Rights
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, Japan, America, Washington, Asia, Australia, Korea
  • Author: Donghyun Park, Kwanho Shin
  • Publication Date: 10-2012
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Peterson Institute for International Economics
  • Abstract: There is a widespread perception that Korea's services sector lags behind its dynamic world-class manufacturing sector. This paper empirically analyzes the past performance of Korea's services sector in order to assess its prospects as an engine of growth. The analysis resoundingly confirms the conventional wisdom of an underperforming service sector. In light of Korea's high income and development level, the poor performance of modern services is of particular concern. The authors identify a number of factors underlying the poor performance and set forth policy recommendations for addressing them. Overall, Korea faces a challenging but navigable road ahead in developing a high value-added services sector.
  • Topic: Development, Economics, Emerging Markets, Industrial Policy, International Trade and Finance
  • Political Geography: Israel, Korea
  • Author: Edwin M. Truman
  • Publication Date: 11-2011
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: Peterson Institute for International Economics
  • Abstract: With great French fanfare the G-20 committed itself in Seoul, Korea a year ago “to build a more stable and resilient international monetary system (IMS), including by further strengthening global financial safety nets.” As subsequently elaborated by French President Sarkozy and other French government officials, the agenda for IMS reform included five elements: surveillance of the global economy and financial system, the international lender-of-last-resort mechanisms (global financial safety nets), the management of global capital flows, reserve assets and reserve currencies, and IMS governance.
  • Topic: Economics, Globalization, International Trade and Finance, Markets, International Monetary Fund
  • Political Geography: Korea
  • Author: Daniel Gros, Richard Youngs, Michael Emerson, Christian Egenhofer, Nathalie Tocci, Giovanni Grevi, Jean-Pierre Cassarino
  • Publication Date: 07-2011
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Centre for European Policy Studies
  • Abstract: Conceptually, Global Matrix advances in a systematic and structured inter-disciplinary (matrix) framework a research agenda for examining the stance of major world actors on the key policy dimensions to world politics (political ideologies, economics, migration, climate change, security and world view); drawing out evidence of cross-cutting linkages (between sectors and among major actors); and evaluating the evolution and adequacy of existing multilateral institutions in relation to the emerging multi-polarity, and formulating recommendations.
  • Topic: Security, Climate Change, Economics, Globalization, International Cooperation, International Organization, Governance
  • Political Geography: Japan, South Africa, Brazil, Korea
  • Author: Min Gyo Koo, Yul Sohn
  • Publication Date: 09-2011
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: International Relations of the Asia-Pacific
  • Institution: Japan Association of International Relations
  • Abstract: The Korea–US free trade agreement (KORUS FTA) of 2007 clearly shows how countries simultaneously pursue economic benefits and strategic interests in trade negotiations. This study argues that the surprise launch and the successful conclusion of the KORUS FTA illustrate the joint efforts by the United States and the Republic of Korea to re-securitize their bilateral economic relations. Security and strategic calculations held by top policy-makers on both sides catalyzed the official launch of FTA negotiations by removing a number of longstanding trade irritants such as Korea's screen quotas and ban on US beefs. At the post-negotiation stage, however, the lack of bipartisanship— particularly in the United States—to provide trade liberalization for their allies in favor of their own broader strategic interests has led to the legislative stalemate of executive efforts at re-securitization of trade relations. This study concludes that the stalemated ratification process shows the erosion, not the strength, of US power to provide security and trade liberalization as public goods.
  • Topic: Economics
  • Political Geography: United States, Korea
  • Publication Date: 01-2010
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Comparative Connections
  • Institution: Center for Strategic and International Studies
  • Abstract: No abstract is available.
  • Topic: Economics
  • Political Geography: North Korea, Korea
  • Author: Scott Snyder, See-Won Byun
  • Publication Date: 01-2010
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Comparative Connections
  • Institution: Center for Strategic and International Studies
  • Abstract: The last quarter of 2009 raised hopes for developments in China's relations with both Koreas. Chinese Vice President Xi Jinping received head-of-state treatment during his mid-December visit to South Korea. In Seoul, Xi presented a series of proposals to further the China-ROK strategic cooperative partnership, including pressing for a free trade agreement. President Lee Myung-bak and Premier Wen Jiabao held bilateral talks on Oct. 10 in Beijing on the sidelines of the China-ROK-Japan trilateral summit, which Lee used to promote his “grand bargain” on North Korean denuclearization. There were also several exchanges between China and the DPRK. In early October, Premier Wen led a large delegation to Pyongyang and proposed a comprehensive set of deals with North Korea. As the first Chinese premier to visit Pyongyang in 18 years, Wen was warmly hosted by Kim Jong-il. Following Wen's visit, the director of the United Front Department of the Workers' Party of Korea (WPK) and Pyongyang's official in charge of inter-Korean relations, Kim Yang-gon, made a five-day trip to China. President Hu Jintao reportedly extended a formal invitation to Kim Jong-il to visit China “at a convenient time” at his meeting with Choe Thae-bok, secretary of the WPK Central Committee and one of Kim's closest aides, who led a WPK delegation to Beijing in late October.
  • Topic: Development, Economics
  • Political Geography: China, Korea
  • Author: Scott Snyder
  • Publication Date: 09-2010
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Comparative Connections
  • Institution: Center for Strategic and International Studies
  • Abstract: China reaffirmed its traditional friendship with a revamped leadership in Pyongyang that emerged from the historic Workers' Party of Korea (WPK) conference that re-elected Kim Jong-il as party and state leader. Kim Jong-il visited Northeast China, holding his second summit with President Hu Jintao this year. Immediately after Pyongyang's party conference, Secretary of the WPK Central Committee Choe Tae-bok led a senior party delegation to Beijing to brief President Hu and other officials. Meanwhile, China-ROK relations remain strained following the March 26 Cheonan incident, marking the lowest point in bilateral relations since diplomatic normalization in 1992. The third China-ROK high-level strategic dialogue was held in Beijing. China and South Korea also held their first preliminary round of free trade agreement talks. Beijing promoted resumption of the Six-Party Talks, sending Special Representative for Korean Peninsula Affairs Wu Dawei to meet counterparts in Pyongyang and Seoul.
  • Topic: Security, Economics
  • Political Geography: China, Beijing, Korea
  • Publication Date: 09-2010
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Comparative Connections
  • Institution: Center for Strategic and International Studies
  • Abstract: No abstract is available.
  • Topic: Security, Economics, Government
  • Political Geography: China, Korea
  • Publication Date: 09-2010
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Comparative Connections
  • Institution: Center for Strategic and International Studies
  • Abstract: No abstract is available.
  • Topic: Economics, Government, Politics
  • Political Geography: Japan, Korea
  • Author: William R. Cline, John Williamson
  • Publication Date: 01-2010
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: Peterson Institute for International Economics
  • Abstract: In June 2009 we issued our annual update of estimates of fundamental equilibrium exchange rates (FEERs) for 34 major economies (Cline and Williamson 2009). At that time the dollar had already begun correction from the substantial overvaluation that had arisen from the strong safe-haven effect associated with the global financial crisis of 2008–09. In this policy brief we report on changes in disequilibria in the exchange markets since the date those earlier calculations referred to, namely March 2009. We first present estimates of the extent of movement toward FEER-consistent bilateral dollar exchange rates from March to December 31, 2009, and then look at how effective exchange rates have altered in the same period. We also re-estimate the FEER-consistent dollar rate for one important currency, the Korean won.
  • Topic: Economics, Foreign Exchange, International Political Economy, Monetary Policy
  • Political Geography: Korea
  • Author: Edwin M. Truman
  • Publication Date: 09-2010
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Peterson Institute for International Economics
  • Abstract: This paper addresses the agenda for the Group of Twenty (G-20) leaders' meeting in Seoul, Korea in November 2010. This is an opportunity and challenge for Asian leaders in particular. Their test will be, first, to demonstrate that they can responsibly advance economic recovery. They must also deliver on institutional reform, in particular of the International Monetary Fund (IMF). I advocate a substantial expansion of the IMF's role as lender of last resort that is integrated with the surveillance role of the IMF in the form of comprehensive prequalification for IMF assistance and policy advice and a substantial increase in the IMF's financial resources. I also propose an approach to meaningful reform of the distribution of IMF quotas along with limiting European seats on the IMF executive board.
  • Topic: Economics, Emerging Markets, Global Recession, Financial Crisis, Governance
  • Political Geography: China, Israel, Asia, Korea
  • Author: Sergei Guriev, Ekaterina Zhuravskaya
  • Publication Date: 06-2010
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Journal of International Affairs
  • Institution: School of International and Public Affairs, Columbia University
  • Abstract: By January 1992, the Soviet Union had dissolved and the new Russian government had liberalized prices for most goods and services, ushering in a new Russian economy. In 2010, this economy turned eighteen years old and has, in Russian terms, come of age. In this article, we assess the current state of the Russian economy and its long-term prospects. Where is the Russian economy today, and where is it heading?
  • Topic: Economics
  • Political Geography: Russia, Korea
  • Author: David C. Kang
  • Publication Date: 01-2009
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Comparative Connections
  • Institution: Center for Strategic and International Studies
  • Abstract: The year ended fairly quietly in Japan-Korea relations with no major events marking the last few months of 2008. Japan-North Korea relations remained stagnant and Japan-South Korea relations essentially ignored the Dokdo/Takeshima dispute, instead focusing on dealing with the widening global economic crisis. The biggest diplomatic event was the successful trilateral summit in December among China, Korea, and Japan, which may set the stage for further diplomatic movement. Whether 2009 will bring dramatic progress on these issues remains to be seen, but with new leaders in Japan and South Korea entering their first full years of rule, the continued concerns about the health of North Korea's leader, and a new U.S. president, the new year holds the possibility for progress on at least some of these issues.
  • Topic: International Relations, Economics
  • Political Geography: United States, Japan, China, North Korea, Korea
  • Author: Arvind Subramanian, Aaditya Mattoo
  • Publication Date: 08-2009
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Center for Global Development
  • Abstract: This paper documents an unusual and possibly significant phenomenon: the export of skills, embodied in goods, services or capital from poorer to richer countries. We first present a set of stylized facts. Using a measure which combines the sophistication of a country's exports with the average income level of destination countries, we show that the performance of a number of developing countries, notably China, Mexico and South Africa, matches that of much more advanced countries, such as Japan, Spain and USA. Creating a new combined dataset on FDI (covering greenfield investment as well as mergers and acquisitions) we show that flows of FDI to OECD countries from developing countries like Brazil, India, Malaysia and South Africa as a share of their GDP, are as large as flows from countries like Japan, Korea and the US. Then, taking the work of Hausmann et al (2007) as a point of departure, we suggest that it is not just the composition of exports but their destination that matters. In both cross-sectional and panel regressions, with a range of controls, we find that a measure of uphill flows of sophisticated goods is significantly associated with better growth performance. These results suggest the need for a deeper analysis of whether development benefits might derive not from deifying comparative advantage but from defying it.
  • Topic: Development, Economics, International Trade and Finance, Foreign Direct Investment
  • Political Geography: United States, Japan, Malaysia, India, South Africa, Brazil, Spain, Korea
  • Author: Sung-Hee Jwa
  • Publication Date: 01-2009
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: International Journal of Korean Studies
  • Institution: International Council on Korean Studies
  • Abstract: This paper reviews the first six months of MBnomics - its strengths, weaknesses, accomplishments and failures, along with suggestions for improvement. Throughout, the paper stresses the unevenness and lopsided nature of economic development which is viewed as the result of economic resources joining and concentrating towards competent, viable economic entities. Such an evolutionary process not only makes economic activity possible, but also leads to individual agents' and national economic development. After reviewing Korea's developmental experience over the past 4 decades, I argue that Korea needs to move away from the egalitarian policies of the past 15 years (the so-called “Egalitarian Trap”) by learning from the earlier decades of high growth and economic development when the flow of resources to economically competent agents and regions was encouraged under highly discriminatory policies. In the past 6 months, so-called MBnomics which intended to establish a regime of “big markets and small government” has clearly underperformed with respect to what was originally anticipated, often being misguided and inconsistent in various areas. This paper argues that economic policy remained in line with its original intentions and focused on instilling the developmental spirit of self-help, diligence, and cooperation throughout all aspects of society by putting into place discrimination policies that “help those that help themselves.” MBnomics must not shy away from the lopsidedness created by the development process and should promptly do away with those policies establishing equality at the expense of the economically viable agents.
  • Topic: Development, Economics
  • Political Geography: Korea
  • Author: Eui-Gak Hwang
  • Publication Date: 01-2009
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: International Journal of Korean Studies
  • Institution: International Council on Korean Studies
  • Abstract: This paper examines inter-Korean economic cooperation and trade. It reviews the political background and current status of the idiosyncratic determinants of inter-Korean economic cooperation and trade, followed by its resultant impacts as well as policy suggestions for future directions. Over the last 20 years, inter-Korean trade increased by about 90-fold from 20 million US dollars in 1989 to 1.8 billion US dollars in 2007. Since 1999, in particular, inter-Korean economic cooperation has expanded significantly. Its share of North Korean total trade accounted for 13 % in 1999, 26% in 2005 and jumped to 61.2% in 2007. Such an increase is due mostly to increasing aid and investment from the South. While the economic gap between the North and South is still widening, the North's brinkmanship strategy shows no sign of ending. The increase in aid and investment from the South owes largely to non-economic factors to help the deteriorating economy and appeasement policy to lure North Korea out of isolation. The success of this lopsided policy by the South is yet to be seen, but a reciprocity principle would likely work better by encouraging the autarchic North to move toward a selfsustaining market economy.
  • Topic: Economics
  • Political Geography: Korea
  • Author: Jaya Prakash Pradhan
  • Publication Date: 08-2009
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Columbia Center on Sustainable Investment
  • Abstract: Just over a year ago, outward foreign direct investment (OFDI) from India seemed to be on a path of rapid and sustained growth. Its annual average growth of 98% during 2004–07 had been unprecedented , much ahead of OFDI growth from other emerging markets like China (74%), Malaysia (70%), Russia (53%), and the Republic of Korea (51%), although from a much lower base. Much of this recent growth had been fuelled by large-scale overseas acquisitions, however, and it faltered when the global financial crisis that started in late 2007 made financing acquisitions harder.
  • Topic: Economics, International Political Economy, International Trade and Finance, Markets, Foreign Direct Investment, Financial Crisis
  • Political Geography: Russia, China, South Asia, Malaysia, Korea
  • Author: Jaya Prakash Pradhan
  • Publication Date: 08-2009
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: Columbia Center on Sustainable Investment
  • Abstract: Just over a year ago, outward foreign direct investment (OFDI) from India seemed to be on a path of rapid and sustained growth. Its annual average growth of 98% during 2004–07 had been unprecedented , much ahead of OFDI growth from other emerging markets like China (74%), Malaysia (70%), Russia (53%), and the Republic of Korea (51%), although from a much lower base. Much of this recent growth had been fuelled by large-scale overseas acquisitions, however, and it faltered when the global financial crisis that started in late 2007 made financing acquisitions harder.
  • Topic: Development, Economics, Foreign Direct Investment, Financial Crisis
  • Political Geography: Russia, China, Malaysia, India, Korea
  • Author: Scott Snyder
  • Publication Date: 10-2008
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Comparative Connections
  • Institution: Center for Strategic and International Studies
  • Abstract: The Games of the 29th Olympiad had preoccupied Chinese leaders for almost a decade as they sought to utilize it to project to domestic and international audiences China's accomplishments on an international stage. It has framed many issues in Sino-Korean relations, especially given the many resonances between the 1988 Olympics in Seoul and the Beijing Olympics two decades later. But now that the Games are over, Chinese leaders may adopt a different frame for viewing the world and the Korean Peninsula, the details of which have begun to emerge in the “post-Olympics era.” President Lee Myung-bak was among the many world leaders who attended the opening ceremonies, while President Hu Jintao returned the visit to Seoul only two weeks later, less than a day after the closing ceremonies in Beijing. In contrast, Kim Jong-il was a no-show not only for the Olympics, but also for the 60th anniversary commemoration of the founding of the DPRK on Sept. 9. The Olympics brought with it a surprising undercurrent of popular anti-Korean sentiment in China, most of it stimulated through internet rumors and the attempt by Korean journalists to tape and release a portion of the Olympic opening ceremonies days before the event. This sentiment may suggest that the “Korean wave” (Chinese attraction to Korean pop culture) is receding – or at least that it is accompanied by a strong undertow of backlash among certain segments of Chinese society. On the Korean side, Chinese product safety issues are another drag on the relationship.
  • Topic: Economics, Politics
  • Political Geography: China, Beijing, Korea
  • Author: Barry Herman
  • Publication Date: 03-2008
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: The New School Graduate Program in International Affairs
  • Abstract: The Institute of International Finance, a bankers group, has promoted its “Principles for Stable Capital Flows and Fair Debt Restructuring” as a code of conduct for debtor governments and their private creditors to avoid and if necessary resolve sovereign defaults. Although drafted with Brazil, Korea, Mexico and Turkey, I argue this purely voluntary code is excessively creditor friendly. Instead, a more balanced code should be developed in a broad, open and politically legitimate forum, and be coupled with an international disciplining mechanism that pushes creditors and debtor to a negotiated outcome under the code. A suggested approach concludes the paper.
  • Topic: Development, Economics, International Trade and Finance, Foreign Aid
  • Political Geography: Turkey, Brazil, Korea, Mexico
  • Author: Patrick Degategno, Joseph Snyder
  • Publication Date: 03-2008
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Atlantic Council
  • Abstract: The Atlantic Council of the United States published a report entitled A Framework for Peace and Security in Korea and Northeast Asia in April 2007. The report was the culmination of deliberations of a working group of distinguis hed American scholars and practitioners with a wide range of experience on Korea and Northeast Asia and chaired by Ambassador James Goodby and General Jack Merritt. It laid out a program for resolving the North Korean nuclear issue as part of a comprehensive s ettlement of a range of fundamental security, political and economic issues on the Korean peni nsula. The working group first met in June 2006, shortly before the North Koreans test fire d a series of missiles and about three months prior to the time Pyongyang exploded its firs t, and so far only, nuclear weapon on October 9. At the time the project began, the Six-P arty talks were suspended and prospects for a peaceful solution to the North Korean nuclear issue looked dim.
  • Topic: Security, Economics, Nuclear Weapons, Authoritarianism
  • Political Geography: United States, Asia, North Korea, Korea
  • Author: Stephan Haggard, Marcus Noland, Yoonok Chang
  • Publication Date: 12-2007
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Peterson Institute for International Economics
  • Abstract: Results from a survey of more than 1,300 North Korean refugees in China provide insight into changing economic conditions in North Korea. There is modest evidence of slightly more positive assessments among those who exited the country following the initiation of reforms in 2002. Education breeds skepticism; higher levels of education were associated with more negative perceptions of economic conditions and reform efforts. Other demographic markers such as gender or provincial origin are not robustly correlated with attitudes. Instead, personal experiences appear to be central: A significant number of the respondents were unaware of the humanitarian aid program and the ones who knew of it almost universally did not believe that they were beneficiaries. This group's evaluation of the regime, its intentions, and accomplishments is overwhelmingly negative—even more so than those of respondents who report having had experienced incarceration in political detention facilities—and attests to the powerful role that the famine experience continues to play in the political economy of the country.
  • Topic: Development, Economics, Politics
  • Political Geography: China, North Korea, Korea
  • Author: Scott Snyder, Joel Wit
  • Publication Date: 02-2007
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: United States Institute of Peace
  • Abstract: The second North Korean nuclear crisis, which climaxed with the test of a nuclear device on October 9, 2006, has influenced the views of Chinese specialists. By revealing the status of North Korean nuclear development, Pyongyang's nuclear test was a poke in the eye of Chinese leaders, who had tried privately and publicly to dissuade North Korean leaders from conducting a test. As a result, China has taken stronger measures to get Pyongyang's attention, including a temporary crackdown on North Korea's illicit financial activities. These changes spotlight an ongoing debate within the Chinese academic community over whether North Korea (DPRK) could become a strategic liability rather than a strategic asset. This debate centers on whether it is necessary to set aside China's loyalty to the current North Korean regime in order to maintain good U.S.-China relations and achieve China's objectives of developing its economy and consolidating its regional and global economic and political influence. Or is maintaining North Korea as a strategic buffer still critical to preserving China's influence on the Korean peninsula? An increasingly vocal minority of Chinese specialists is urging starkly tougher measures in response to North Korea's “brazen” act, including reining in the Kim Jong Il regime or promoting alternative leadership in Pyongyang. Although their sympathy and ideological identification with North Korea has waned, many Chinese policy analysts clearly prefer North Korea's peaceful reform to a U.S.- endorsed path of confrontation or regime change. China's policymakers have sought to forestall North Korean nuclear weapons development, but they continue to blame U.S. inflexibility for contributing to heightened regional tensions over North Korea's nuclear program. Chinese analysts fret that economic and political instability inside North Korea could negatively affect China itself. They have shown more concern about the North Korean regime's stability in recent months than at any time since the food crisis in the late 1990s. Chinese policymakers ask how to encourage North Korea's leaders to embark on economic reform without increasing political instability. Discussions with Chinese experts reveal considerable uncertainty about the future of North Korean reform. The possibilities of military confrontation on the Korean peninsula, involving the United States and either a violent regime change or destabilization through North Korea's failure to maintain political control, are equally threatening to China's fundamental objective of promoting regional stability. These prospects have increased following North Korea's nuclear test and the strong reaction from the international community, as shown by UN Security Council Resolution 1718. China's economic rise has given it new financial tools for promoting stability of weak states on its periphery. Expanded financial capacity to provide aid or new investment in North Korea might help it achieve political and economic stabilization. The Chinese might prefer to use the resumption of benefits temporarily withheld as a way of enhancing their leverage by reminding the North of its dependence on Beijing's largesse. Managing the ongoing six-party talks will pose an increasingly difficult diplomatic challenge for China. Chinese diplomats take credit for mediation and shuttle diplomacy, but their accomplishments thus far have been modest. Talks have been fairly useful in stabilizing the situation, but they have also revealed the limits of China's diplomatic influence on both the United States and North Korea. U.S. intransigence is as much an object of frustration to the Chinese as North Korean stubbornness. Chinese analysts clearly have given thought to potential consequences of regime instability. For example, the Chinese military's contingency plans for preventing the spillover of chaos into China and for seizing loose nukes and fissile material imply that Chinese forces would move into North Korean territory. Without effective coordination, simultaneous interventions in the event of unforeseen crisis inside North Korea could lead to direct military conflict among U.S., Chinese, and South Korean military forces. Rather than accept South Korean intervention backed by the United States as a prelude to reunification, Chinese analysts repeatedly emphasize that “the will of the North Korean people must be considered” in the event of instability. If intervention were necessary, China clearly would prefer insertion of an international peacekeeping force under UN auspices. Such a force would establish a representative government, which would then decide whether to negotiate reunification with South Korea.
  • Topic: International Relations, Economics
  • Political Geography: United States, China, Beijing, Asia, South Korea, North Korea, Korea
  • Author: Nermeen Shaikh
  • Publication Date: 04-2007
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Asia Society
  • Abstract: Marcus Noland is a senior fellow at the Peterson Institute for International Economics. His work encompasses a wide range of topics including the political economy of US trade policy and the Asian financial crisis. Mr Noland is unique among American economists in having devoted serious scholarly effort to the problems of North Korea and the prospects for Korean unification. He won the 2000–01 Ohira Masayoshi Award for his book Avoiding the Apocalypse: The Future of the Two Koreas.
  • Topic: Development, Economics, Markets
  • Political Geography: United States, America, Asia, North Korea, Korea
  • Author: O.G. Dayaratna-Banda, John Whalley
  • Publication Date: 04-2007
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Centre for International Governance Innovation
  • Abstract: East Asia is witnessing the emergence of an informal monetary system which focuses on self-insurance through own reserve accumulation and co-insurance through swaps. The former is concentrated in a small number of large countries (China, Japan, and Korea), while the latter involves informal monetary cooperation among monetary authorities in a large number of countries. The origins of this system lie in the Asian financial crises, and reflect concerns both to avoid repetition of similar events and any spread of further crises through contagion effects. This paper first characterizes and documents this emerging system describing how it works and what its objectives are, and then discusses its performance, its incompleteness, and assesses the system's ability to move towards deeper integration without adopting a single monetary authority as well as the impediments it faces. What is clear is that this type of system among individual countries is incomplete and falls well short of complete monetary integration, but at present it performs well even if it experiences a number of deficiencies. Most countries seem better off with partial reserve pooling, while incremental gains from higher degrees of pooling in the region tend to be small.
  • Topic: Development, Economics, Regional Cooperation
  • Political Geography: Japan, China, Asia, Korea
  • Publication Date: 03-2007
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: The Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development
  • Abstract: Regulatory reform is a priority in the effort to promote sustainable economic growth, complementing sound macroeconomic policies. It can help shift economic activity to higher value-added production and services, encourage the use of appropriate and new technology and make national economies more resilient to economic shocks. Regulatory reform is a very important asset as countries move forward in the process of globalisation.
  • Topic: Development, Economics, Globalization, Science and Technology
  • Political Geography: Korea
  • Author: Bassam A. Fattouh, Panicos O. Demetriades
  • Publication Date: 08-2006
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: United Nations University
  • Abstract: We provide a novel empirical analysis of the South Korean credit market that reveals large volumes of excess credit since the late 1970s, indicating that a sizeable proportion of total credit was being used to refinance unprofitable projects. Our findings are consistent with theoretical literature that suggests that soft budget constraints and overborrowing were significant factors behind the Korean financial crisis of 1997-98.
  • Topic: Economics, International Trade and Finance, Markets
  • Political Geography: Asia, South Korea, Korea
  • Author: Hyun H. Son, Nanak Kakwani
  • Publication Date: 06-2006
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: United Nations University
  • Abstract: This paper looks into the interrelation between economic growth, inequality, and poverty. Using the notion of pro-poor growth, this study examines to what extent the poor benefit from economic growth. First, various approaches to defining and measuring pro-poor growth are scrutinized using a variety of criteria. It is argued that the satisfaction of a monotonicity axiom is a key criterion for measuring pro-poor growth. The monotonicity axiom sets out a condition that the proportional reduction in poverty is monotonically an increasing function of the pro-poor growth measure. This paper proposes a pro-poor growth measure that satisfies the monotonicity criterion. This measure is called the 'poverty equivalent growth rate', which takes into account both the magnitude of growth and how the benefits of the growth are distributed to the poor and the non-poor. As the new measure satisfies the criterion of monotonicity, it is indicative that to achieve a rapid poverty reduction, the poverty equivalent growth rate ought to be maximized rather than the actual growth rate. The methodology developed in the paper is then applied to Asian countries, including the Republic of Korea, Thailand, and Vietnam.
  • Topic: Development, Economics, Poverty
  • Political Geography: Asia, Vietnam, Korea, Thailand
  • Author: Jeffrey J. Schott, Scott C. Bradford, Thomas Moll
  • Publication Date: 06-2006
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: Peterson Institute for International Economics
  • Abstract: Five years ago the Institute published Free Trade between Korea and the United States? by Inbom Choi and Jeffrey J. Schott, which analyzed the potential benefits and costs of pursuing a bilateral free trade agreement (FTA). At the time, neither government had vetted the idea in bilateral consultations, though some business groups in each country—and some members of the US Congress—had voiced support for deepening US-Korea economic ties through an FTA.
  • Topic: Economics, International Organization, Political Economy
  • Political Geography: United States, Asia, Korea
  • Publication Date: 04-2006
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: The Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development
  • Abstract: For many cities in OECD countries, globalisation has opened access to new markets, skilled human resources and advanced technology, while accelerating international competition and industrial restructuring. Seoul – a city of 10.3 million people at the core of a capital region of 22.5 million people, one of the world's most populous metropolitan regions – is striving to upgrade its position from that of a national mega-capital to become a “world city” and a leading business hub in Northeast Asia.
  • Topic: Development, Economics, International Organization, International Trade and Finance
  • Political Geography: Korea, Northeast Asia, Seoul
  • Author: Takuji Kinkyo
  • Publication Date: 08-2004
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: School of Oriental and African Studies - University of London
  • Abstract: This paper analyzes Korea's exchange rate dynamics before and during the crisis of 1997-98 by estimating the long-run fundamental exchange rate and the associated error correction model. The analysis suggests that although Korea's exchange rate was substantially overvalued before the crisis, the subsequent exchange rate dynamics could not fully be accounted by the need to correct misalignments. It was found that there was a large deviation from the short-run fundamental value of exchange rates, indicating the presence of “overshooting of the overshooting equilibrium” during the crisis. The findings have important policy implications for crisis management in emerging market economies.
  • Topic: International Relations, Development, Economics, International Political Economy
  • Political Geography: Korea
  • Author: Takuji Kinkyo
  • Publication Date: 08-2004
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: School of Oriental and African Studies - University of London
  • Abstract: The Asian crisis highlighted the vulnerability of emerging market economies faced by sudden capital flow reversals. An important question that has critical implications for crisis management is how negative shocks in capital inflows were transmitted to economic activities, transforming financial instability into fully-fledged crises. Using VARs, this paper analyzes the transmission mechanism of capital flow shocks during the Korean crisis of 1997-98. Although it is commonly believed that severe economic contractions were caused by credit crunch, the analysis suggests that the major constraint for production was a steep rise in prices of imported inputs due to sharp exchange rate depreciations.
  • Topic: International Relations, Development, Economics, International Political Economy
  • Political Geography: Asia, Korea
  • Author: Marcus Noland
  • Publication Date: 08-2004
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Peterson Institute for International Economics
  • Abstract: This paper attempts to determine whether conditions amenable to successful selective interventions to capture cross-industry externalities are likely to be fulfilled in practice. Three criteria are proposed for good candidates for industrial promotion: that they have strong interindustry links to the rest of the economy, that they lead the rest of the economy in a causal sense, and that they be characterized by a high s hare of industry-specific innovations in output growth. According to these criteria, likely candidates for successful intervention are identified in the Korean data. It is found that, with one exception, none of the sectors promoted by the heavy and chemical industry (HCI) policy fulfills all three criteria.
  • Topic: Development, Economics
  • Political Geography: Israel, East Asia, Korea
  • Publication Date: 06-2004
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: The Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development
  • Abstract: Korea has been one of the fastest growing economies in the OECD area over the past five years, with an annual growth rate of about 6 per cent. Such rapid growth, which has lifted per capita income to two-thirds of the OECD average, reflects Korea's underlying dynamism and its progress in implementing a wide-ranging reform programme in the wake of the 1997 crisis. However, the recession in 2003 – which was due in part to structural problems in the labour market and in the corporate and financial sectors – indicates that the reform agenda is unfinished. Sustaining rapid growth over the medium term as the contribution from inputs of labour and capital slows requires further progress in structural reform, particularly in the labour market and in the corporate and financial sectors, accompanied by appropriate macroeconomic policies.
  • Topic: Development, Economics, Government
  • Political Geography: Asia, Korea
  • Author: Gi-Wook Shin
  • Publication Date: 01-2003
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Walter H. Shorenstein Asia-Pacific Research Center
  • Abstract: Some months ago a Stanford freshman came to ask for help on his project on Korea. At the time, I thought he was a Korean American, given that his command of both English and Korean is excellent. To my surprise, I learned that he was educated until high school in Korea and had never been to the United States before coming to Stanford. He surprised me further when he told me about his high school, the Korean Minjok Leadership Academy (KMLA). Located in a remote area of Kwangwon province—arguably the more underdeveloped region in South Korea—KMLA aspires to be Korea's version of Eton. The school's goal is to produce Korea's future leaders, and to instill in them a strong national identity (see its website at http://www.minjok.hs.kr). Fascinated by what he told me, I made a visit to his high school in fall 2002.
  • Topic: Economics, Globalization, Nationalism
  • Political Geography: United States, America, Asia, Korea
  • Author: Richard Bush, Dean Nowowiejski, Tomatsu Nakano
  • Publication Date: 04-2003
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: The Brookings Institution
  • Abstract: Most signs during the late summer and early fall of 2002 pointed to progress on the Korean peninsula. North Korean leader Kim Jong Il had finally grasped, it appeared, the need for international moderation and domestic reform. The United States seemed ready to respond in kind. But with the visit to Pyongyang in October of U.S. Assistant Secretary of State James Kelly – the first high-level contact since the Bush Administration came into office – the situation quickly unraveled. Instead of offering the “bold initiative” that was reportedly in the works, Kelly confronted his interlocutors with evidence that their government had mounted a new, clandestine uranium-based nuclear program. The North Koreans refused to disavow the program and insisted on their right to nuclear weapons. Kelly responded that the United States would not engage the DPRK unless and until it abandoned the program. The status of the 1994 U.S.-DPRK Agreed Framework, which had capped North Korea's plutonium-based program in return for international assistance in meeting its civilian energy needs, was uncertain at best. The Korean Peninsula Energy Development Organization (KEDO), the mechanism for providing that aid, stopped heavy fuel oil shipments to North Korea at the end of 2002 at American insistence.
  • Topic: Economics, International Political Economy, International Trade and Finance
  • Political Geography: United States, Asia, Korea, Sinai Peninsula
  • Author: Jon Wongswan
  • Publication Date: 02-2003
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System
  • Abstract: This paper provides evidence of transmission of information from the U.S. and Japan to Korean and Thai equity markets during the period from 1995 through 2000. Information is defined as important macroeconomic announcements in the U.S., Japan, Korea, and Thailand. Using high-frequency intraday data, I focus the study on return volatility and trading volume because the implications of new information are much clearer than for returns. I find a large and significant association between emerging-economy equity volatility and trading volume and developed-economy macroeconomic announcements at short-time horizons. This is the first strong evidence of this sort of international information transmission. Previous studies' findings of at most weak evidence may be due to their use of lower frequency data and their focus on developed-economy financial market innovations as the measure of information.
  • Topic: Economics, International Trade and Finance
  • Political Geography: United States, Japan, Asia, Korea, Thailand
  • Author: Kyounglim Yun, Heejin Lee, So-Hye Lim
  • Publication Date: 09-2002
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Walter H. Shorenstein Asia-Pacific Research Center
  • Abstract: In recent years, Korea has seen a remarkable diffusion in broadband Internet connections. This paper explores the actions and factors contributing to this diffusion from three viewpoints: public sector, private sector, and social. We suggest that the matching of demand and supply is the most important factor in the fast diffusion of broadband in Korea. In particular, fierce infrastructure competition has led to quality services at a low fixed price. We also consider two challenges that lie ahead: take-up of retail e-commerce applications, and the need to bridge the digital divide.
  • Topic: Economics, International Trade and Finance, Science and Technology
  • Political Geography: Asia, South Korea, Korea
  • Author: Nancy Birdsall, Thomas Pinckney, Richard Sabot
  • Publication Date: 02-2000
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Carnegie Endowment for International Peace
  • Abstract: In this paper, we present evidence that among developing countries, those that are resource-abundant invest less in education. We then discuss the economic processes behind this evidence. We describe a virtuous circle in which rising private returns to human capital and other assets lead to increased work effort and higher rates of private investment immediately, including among the poor, and generate higher productivity and lower inequality in the future. With resource abundance, however, governments are tempted to move away from the policies that generate this virtuous circle. Dutch Disease and related effects tend to lower the rate of return to the agricultural and human capital investments available to the poor. Resource rents accumulate in the hands of the government, and/or a small number of businessmen, further reducing incentives to invest. Staple-trap effects lead to the subsidization of capital, thereby taxing labor. The labor market in the resulting capital-intensive economy offers little benefit for moderate levels of education. The government may try to assuage the poor by directing some proportion of resource rents to populist programs that create new fiscal burdens but that do not enhance productivity. In short, resource abundance tends to break the virtuous circle linking education, growth and inequality in several places: the choice of development strategy, the level of inequality, the lack of incentives for investment in education, and the creation of a welfare state. We illustrate this breakdown by contrasting the cases of Korea and Brazil, and, since resource abundance need not be destiny, we conclude with policy lessons for resource-abundant developing economies.
  • Topic: Economics, Education, Emerging Markets, Government, Political Economy, Third World
  • Political Geography: Brazil, Korea
  • Author: Meredith Woo-Cumings
  • Publication Date: 06-2000
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Council on Foreign Relations
  • Abstract: The Asian financial crisis of 1997–98 involved, among other things, a failure of regulation. Some believe this failure is endemic to global capitalism, and others believe it was profoundly local and idiosyncratic, emanating from regulatory flaws in the affected countries, stretching an arc from Thailand and Indonesia to Korea and Japan. There is also a debate about the nature of the regulation that failed. Some argue that the crisis emanated from a surfeit of nettlesome regulations and endemic industrial policy; others claim it happened for want of effective regulations and (even) industrial policy. Across the hypotenuse of these disagreements, however, stretches a universal recognition that regulatory infrastructure and institutions do matter and that they must play a major role in the way we think about economic development. After the miracle years in East Asia, “good governance” has become the Spirit of the Age.
  • Topic: Economics, Political Economy
  • Political Geography: United States, Japan, Indonesia, Israel, East Asia, Asia, Korea, Thailand
  • Author: C. Fred Bergsten
  • Publication Date: 03-2000
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Peterson Institute for International Economics
  • Abstract: The initial postwar challenge from East Asia was economic. Japan crashed back into global markets in the 1960s, became the largest surplus and creditor country in the 1980s, and was viewed by many as the world's dominant economy by 1990. The newly industrialized countries (Korea, Taiwan, Hong Kong, Singapore) followed suit on a smaller but still substantial scale shortly thereafter. China only re-entered world commerce in the 1980s but has now become the second largest economy (in purchasing power terms), the second largest recipient of foreign direct investment inflows, and the second largest holder of monetary reserves. Indonesia and most of Southeast Asia grew at 7 percent for two or more decades. The oil crises of the 1970s and the financial crises of the late 1990s injected temporary setbacks but East Asia has clearly become a third major pole of the world economy, along with North America and Western Europe.
  • Topic: Economics, International Trade and Finance, Political Economy
  • Political Geography: Japan, China, Europe, Israel, Taiwan, East Asia, Asia, North America, Korea, Singapore, Hong Kong
  • Author: Petra Stephan
  • Publication Date: 09-2000
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Institute for Development and Peace
  • Abstract: This report is based on an international workshop which took place at the Institute of Development and Peace (INEF) in Duisburg/Germany in June 2000. A delegation of the Republic of Korea - including members of local communities and local governments, as well as NGO representatives – on a study trip to Germany - had been invited to exchange experiences and information about Local Agenda 21 processes in Germany and the Republic of Korea. The following papers reflect important issues which have been raised and discussed during the workshop.
  • Topic: Economics, Globalization
  • Political Geography: Europe, Israel, Germany, Korea
  • Author: Wi Saeng Kim
  • Publication Date: 05-2000
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Weatherhead Center for International Affairs, Harvard University
  • Abstract: This paper conducts an event study for a sample of firms listed on the Korean Stock Exchange. The study finds that positive and statistically significant abnormal returns occur around the announcement date of foreign direct investments. This finding suggests that security prices in the Korean stock market do reflect firm-specific information, and that FDI by Korean MNCs are, on average, value increasing investment decisions. The finding is consistent with the studies of Doukas and Travlos (1988) and Fatemi (1984) which found similar results for U.S. MNCs.
  • Topic: Economics, Emerging Markets, International Trade and Finance
  • Political Geography: United States, Israel, Korea
  • Author: Marcus Noland, Sherman Robinson, Tao Wang
  • Publication Date: 07-1999
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Peterson Institute for International Economics
  • Abstract: For North Korea, product market integration would generate large welfare gains, sufficient to end the famine. Additional gains could be had through military demobilization. For the South, the impact of product market integration would be trivial, but the impact of factor market integration would be considerable, affecting the composition of output, distribution of income, and rate of growth.
  • Topic: Economics, International Trade and Finance, Political Economy
  • Political Geography: Israel, East Asia, Korea
  • Author: George Bunn
  • Publication Date: 09-1999
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Center for International Security and Cooperation (CISAC), Stanford University
  • Abstract: The nuclear nonproliferation regime was challenged in 1998 by nuclear-weapon tests in India and Pakistan, by medium-range missile tests in those countries and in Iran and North Korea, by Iraq's defiance of UN Security Council resolutions requiring it to complete its disclosure of efforts to acquire weapons of mass destruction, and by the combination of “loose nukes” and economic collapse in Russia. Additional threats to the regime's vitality came in 1999 from the erosion of American relations with both China and Russia that resulted from NATO's 1999 bombing of Yugoslavia—with additional harm to relations with China resulting from U.S. accusations of Chinese nuclear espionage and Taiwan's announcement that it was a state separate from China despite its earlier acceptance of a U.S.-Chinese “one China” agreement. Major threats to the regime also came from the continued stalemate on arms-control treaties in the Russian Duma and the U.S. Senate, from a change in U.S. policy to favor building a national defense against missile attack, and from a Russian decision to develop a new generation of small tactical nuclear weapons for defense against conventional attack.
  • Topic: International Relations, Arms Control and Proliferation, Economics, Government, Nuclear Weapons
  • Political Geography: Pakistan, Russia, United States, China, Europe, Iran, South Asia, Middle East, Israel, East Asia, Asia, Korea
  • Author: Charles Wolf, Michele Zanini
  • Publication Date: 04-1998
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Walter H. Shorenstein Asia-Pacific Research Center
  • Abstract: Alliances are organizations between or among independent entities that concert to produce “collective goods” for the mutual benefit of alliance members. The statement applies whether the alliances are between or among countries, corporations, universities, research centers, or other institutions. Of course, the nature of the collective goods, as well as the membership in the collectivity, differs across these cases. That the goods (or benefits) are “collective” means that their availability to one alliance member (or their production by any member) implies their availability to the other members of the alliance.
  • Topic: International Relations, Security, Defense Policy, Economics
  • Political Geography: United States, Japan, Israel, East Asia, Korea
  • Author: Marcus Noland, Sherman Robinson, Li-gang Liu
  • Publication Date: 03-1998
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Walter H. Shorenstein Asia-Pacific Research Center
  • Abstract: Existing estimates of the costs of unification are inadequate for a number of reasons. In this paper we use a dynamic computable general equilibrium model to calculate South Korean and total peninsular income streams under a variety of unification (and non–unification) scenarios. We find that there are scenarios in which the present discounted value of South Korean income is higher with unification than without it. Although lower income groups in South Korea experience reduced incomes under this scenario, with redistribution of the gains, everyone can be made better off. Indeed, this scenario, which involves relatively low levels of South Korean private investment in the North together with relatively high levels of North–South migration, is also the one which generates the highest level of total peninsular income as well. The latter point is critical in that it suggests that there is no necessary conflict between the economic interests of North and South Koreans after unification.
  • Topic: Security, Economics, International Organization, Political Economy
  • Political Geography: Israel, East Asia, Korea
  • Author: Gregory W. Noble
  • Publication Date: 11-1996
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Berkeley Roundtable on the International Economy
  • Abstract: The last decade has witnessed a momentous transformation in the political economy of East and Southeast Asia. From the 1950s until the early 1980s transnational production played a limited role in the strategies of Northeast Asian governments and firms. Ubiquitous policies of protection and promotion aimed to increase domestic investment, production and exports. Governments discouraged outward investment through financial controls, particularly over foreign currencies; they limited inward foreign investment to narrowly confined niches, and then often subjected it to onerous restrictions to prevent foreigners from gaining a major foothold in the national economy. The few exceptions involved areas in which domestic production was inadequate: investments in Southeast Asian raw materials and energy; investments by Japanese and Western firms in Korea and Taiwan for some labor-intensive products to be sold in local or third-country markets (but rarely in Japan); and a handful of high-tech investments by Western firms such as IBM which enjoyed such strong patent positions that they could not be forced to license their technology. Since the mid-1980s the combination of rapid currency appreciation, rising costs of labor, land and pollution control in Northeast Asia, and liberalizing economic reforms in Southeast Asia led to a huge surge of direct foreign investment, mainly for the production of labor-intensive manufactured goods. The focal point of Northeast Asian economies shifted from export-led growth based on protected domestic markets to management of regional production networks spread throughout Asia.
  • Topic: Economics, Industrial Policy
  • Political Geography: Japan, Taiwan, Asia, Korea