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The Positive Effect of Public Investment on Potential Growth

Jean-Marc Fournier

No 1347, OECD Economics Department Working Papers from OECD Publishing

Abstract: An estimated baseline convergence model capturing the long-term effect of human capital and physical investment on potential output for a panel of OECD countries is augmented with public investment and its components. The estimations suggest that public investment has a positive effect on long-term growth and on labour productivity. Public investment can also increase the speed of convergence of catching-up countries. Public investment is more beneficial in some areas than others. This is particularly the case of public investment in health and in research and development. There is also evidence that growth gains from increasing public investment may decline at a high level of the public capital stock due to decreasing returns L’effet positif de l’investissement public sur la croissance potentielle Un modèle de convergence de base mesure l’effet à long terme du capital humain et de l’investissement physique sur la production potentielle pour un panel de pays de l’OCDE. L’investissement public et ses composantes y sont ajoutés. Les estimations suggèrent que l’investissement public a un effet positif sur la croissance et sur la productivité du travail à long terme. L’investissement public peut également accroître la vitesse de convergence des pays en voie de rattrapage. L’investissement public est plus bénéfique dans certains domaines que d’autres. C’est particulièrement le cas de l’investissement public dans la santé et dans la recherche et le développement. Il est également prouvé que les gains de croissance découlant de l’accroissement des investissements publics pourraient baisser à un niveau élevé de stock de capital public en raison de rendements décroissants.

Keywords: decreasing marginal returns; growth; health investment; public investment; research and development (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: H54 O40 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2016-12-15
References: View references in EconPapers View complete reference list from CitEc
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