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Do natural resources, urbanization, and value-adding manufacturing affect environmental quality? Evidence from the top ten manufacturing countries

Irfan Khan, Fujun Hou, Hoang Phong Le () and Syed Ahtsham Ali

Resources Policy, 2021, vol. 72, issue C

Abstract: Environmental pollutants have become a problem throughout the world. In the past few years, investigations of ecological footprints and their determining factors have been at the core of debate among policymakers. However, some of the crucial determinants of ecological footprints, such as the value-adding manufacturing and the merchandise trade have not been sufficiently covered in the literature. Manufacturing and the merchandise trade provide substantial economic growth opportunities but are frequently associated with high pollution and environmental degradation. We investigate the impact of natural resources, urbanization, value-adding manufacturing, and the merchandise trade on the ecological footprints and economic growth of the top ten manufacturing countries using data from 1970 to 2016. We designed comprehensive empirical analyses and applied advanced econometric methodologies to show that value-adding manufacturing, the merchandise trade, and urbanization are positively associated and natural resources are negatively associated with countries' ecological footprints and economic growth. Our results suggest that urbanization, value-adding manufacturing, and the merchandise trade deteriorate environmental quality while simultaneously stimulating economic growth. Policymakers are encouraged to address sustainable manufacturing and trade policies through commercial exchanges, to generate fair trade, to protect natural resources, and to address urbanization to secure a sustainable future. The study's limitations and directions for future research are discussed.

Keywords: Ecological footprint; Economic growth; Natural resources; Urbanization; Value-adding manufacturing; Top 10 manufacturing countries (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2021
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DOI: 10.1016/j.resourpol.2021.102109

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