This paper analyzes growth of the Korean economy in the 1990s, and its relationship with the nation’s export performance. Total factor productivity (TFP) played a significant role in growth for select industries, and a sharp increase in TFP was observed in the late 1990s in Korea, especially for the electrics and electronics industry and automobile industry. In the 1990s, overall, TFP and total factor input (TFI) was more closely related to Korea’s exports growth to China and Japan respectively. Furthermore, it is striking that competition between Korea and China became more intensive for the industries for which a fast increase in TFI and TFP was observed in Korea. The extent of challenges from China was relatively weaker for the Korean industries with relatively higher contribution from TFP. (The rest omitted)
Korea Development Institute, P.O. Box 113, Cheongnyang, Seoul 130-012, Korea. (T)82-2-958-4204, (email) firstname.lastname@example.org. This paper is the outgrowth of the paper prepared for the KDI 33rd Anniversary Conference on Industrial Dynamism and Comptitiveness in the East Asian Economies. The author is grateful to Chunsik Woo, Chin-Hee Hahn, Dongseok Kim, Jaeho Lee and Joonghae Suh for their constructive comments and encouragement, and appreciate participants of the conference for their comments. In particular, Dongseok Kim and Jaeho Lee provided invaluable advice on productivity and trade performance respectively. Assistance from Jungmi Kim and Kwangsung Kim is greatly appreciated.