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ESSAYS ON GLOBAL VALUE CHAINS AND INTERNATIONAL TRADE IN SOUTHEAST ASIAN COUNTRIES

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thesis
posted on 05.08.2022, 04:12 authored by Linh PhamLinh Pham

This thesis is composed of three essays on global value chains (GVCs) and international trade in developing countries. The first essay studies to what extent global value chains are associated with the country’s female employment. Using the firm-level data of the Small and Medium Enterprise Survey in Vietnam in 2011-2015, we analyze the impacts of GVCs on female employment in 2,885 firms across 18 industries, controlling for the intensity of a firm’s GVC involvement. The empirical analysis suggests that GVCs are positively associated with total female employment, unskilled female employment (employees with no tertiary education), and production female employment, whereas the association is negative for skilled female employment (employees with tertiary education), and non-production female employment. We also find that the share of female employment declines when GVC-involved firms increase their technology adoption (measured as the number of personal computers), suggesting that female employment in Vietnam remains largely in the low value-added stages of the production process.

The second essay examines the impacts of tariff reductions after the WTO accession on the labour market across 61 provinces in Vietnam. Using individual-level data from the household survey (VHLSS) in 2004-2016, we find evidence of the variation in the impacts on employment, unemployment, labour force inactivity, and wages across provinces and genders. We measure the exposure to tariff reduction as the weighted average of all import tariffs at the province level (the weight of each industry’s import tariff at the province level is the share of employment in that industry in each province in 1999). The probability of being employed in the traded sector declined for workers in provinces more exposed to tariff reductions. Displaced workers were likely to move from the traded to the non-traded sector for employment. The probability of unemployment declined for both male and female workers, while the probability of being labour force inactive increased for only female individuals. Male workers’ wages in provinces more exposed to the trade shocks increased after the WTO accession. There were no significant changes in wages for female workers. The third essay investigates the association between institutional similarity and trade via global value chains of the Textiles & apparel sector and the Electrical machinery sector in Southeast Asian countries (ASEAN) in 2000-2015. We calculate the indicators of global value chains from the EORA multi-region input-output database. Focusing on the contract enforcement and rule of law dimension of institutions, our gravity-model estimates suggest that the effects of institutional similarity between each country and its respective trade partners operate through the sector-specific capital intensity and complexity pertaining to the global value chains. In particular, we find a positive association between institutional similarity and the global value chain participation of the Electrical machinery sector. However, there are no significant effects of institutional similarity on the global value chains of the Textiles & apparel sector. We divide the samples into strong-institution ASEAN countries (whose the rule of law indicator is positive) and weak-institution ASEAN countries (whose rule of law indicator is negative). We then estimate the importance of institutional similarity for the two subsamples separately. For ASEAN countries with relatively weak institutions, the increase in institutional similarity with weak-institution trade partners is positively associated with the GVC trade of the Electrical machinery sector. However, the increase in institutional similarity with their strong-institution trade partners is negatively associated with the GVC trade of the Electrical machinery sector. We observe no significant association between institutional similarity and GVC trade for strong-institution ASEAN countries.

History

Copyright Date

05/08/2022

Date of Award

05/08/2022

Publisher

Te Herenga Waka—Victoria University of Wellington

Rights License

Author Retains Copyright

Degree Discipline

Economics

Degree Grantor

Te Herenga Waka—Victoria University of Wellington

Degree Level

Doctoral

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy

ANZSRC Socio-Economic Outcome code

150507 Micro labour market issues; 150103 Trade policy

ANZSRC Type Of Activity code

3 Applied research

Victoria University of Wellington Item Type

Awarded Doctoral Thesis

Language

en_NZ

Victoria University of Wellington School

School of Economics and Finance

Advisors

Jinjarak, Yothin; Kirkby, Robert