Lahore School of Economics

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Patterns of Export Diversification In Pakistan

Hamna Ahmed, Lahore School of Economics
(Paper co-authored with Naved Hamid)

In this paper, we look at historical trends in diversification of exports in Pakistan. As a first step, we use the Hirschman index, to quantify the degree of diversification in Pakistan’s exports. As a next step we analyzethe structure of Pakistani exports from the lens of ‘traditionality’. To that end,we construct industry-specific average cumulative export experience functions i.e. a ‘Traditionality’ indexof all two-digit export industries in Pakistan from 1972 to 2012. This is useful in distinguishing between traditional versus non-traditional export industries in the country. Next, this study attempts to identify episodes of structural change in the export sector since 1972. For this purpose, the traditionality index is re-calculated using 5-year interval periods and the across-industry variance of this index is used to study the degree of structural change in the medium term in the export sector. Periods in which the inter-industry variance is low are interpreted as times when export industries experienced uniform patterns of export growth (and thereby no structural change) while periods in which the inter-industry variance is high are interpreted as times when export industries experienced varied patterns of growth and thus went through an episode of structural change. Finally we study the relationship between structural change in the country’s export sector and GDP growth, growth rate of world trade, trade liberalization in the country and the degree exchange rate overvaluation.

About the presenter:

Hamna Ahmed is a senior research and teaching fellow at the Centre for Research in Economics and Business, Lahore School of Economics. She has a Masters’ degree in economics from Warwick University and she has been affiliated with the Lahore School since 2008. Ms. Ahmad is currently enrolled as a PhD student at University of Kent. On the macro side, Hamna is interested in issues relating to Trade and Export Competitiveness. On the micro side she is interested in issues such as Firm and Innovation, Education and Child Labor. She is currently working on community-led organizations across Pakistan in collaboration with Pakistan Poverty Alleviation Fund (PPAF) and researchers from Oxford University, UK.

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posted by S A J Shirazi @ 3/27/2014 03:30:00 PM,

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