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Evidence of Shifts in the Determinants of Japanese Manufacturing Trade 1970-95

Peter Drysdale () and Ligang Song ()

Asia Pacific Economic Papers from Australia-Japan Research Centre, Crawford School of Public Policy, The Australian National University

Abstract: Using pooled cross-section and time-series data for 17 manufacturing industries in Japan, this paper examines whether and how Japan’s comparative advantage in manufacturing changed over the period 1970 to 1995. The results show that physical and human capital were the main sources of comparative advantage in manufacturing over the whole period, with human capital exerting the stronger influence. A gradual change in the relationship between net exports and factor intensities began to take place in the early to mid-1970s, when unskilled labour turned from being a source of comparative advantage to being a source of comparative disadvantage in manufacturing and human capital started to exert a significant influence on trade. The structural adjustment in Japan’s manufacturing trade with respect to unskilled labour lagged about five to ten years behind the United States.

JEL-codes: F10 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Pages: 20 pages
Date: 2001-11
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