Browsing by Author "Bank of Finland Institute for Emerging Economies (BOFIT)"

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  • Lintunen, Julia (2021)
    BOFIT Policy Brief 1/2021
    Since becoming a WTO member in 2001, China has negotiated numerous regional trade agreements with astonishing speed. This paper provides an overview of China’s current free trade agreements and examines the economic importance of two major Asian regional trade agreements for China. The academic literature often treats China’s free trade agreements as driven more by political, rather than economic, interests. The agreements are seen as shallow and concluded with minor economic partners. In fact, China’s approach to trade agreements has evolved over time and cumulative impact of these agreements has been positive for trade between China and its agreement partners. The recently concluded Asian regional free trade agreement, the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP), should positively influence trade for both China and other participating Asian countries. China could also benefit economically from joining the other major regional trade agreement, the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP).
  • Barker, Jamie; Herrala, Risto (2021)
    BOFIT Policy Brief 8/2021
    Since embarking on economic reform in 1991, India has experienced three decades of rapid economic development. Recently, however, there has been significant uncertainty about the growth outlook of the Indian economy in the mid-term perspective. In this paper we use standard regression techniques to project the path of the Indian economy over the next 4 years. The analysis, which abstracts from the pandemic period, mainly serves as support to forecasting the global economy. After the pandemic, GDP growth is projected to rebound this year and then slide to-wards 6 ‒ 7% in the medium term. The analysis broadly agrees with the recent projections of India’s mid-term growth rate by other institutions.
  • Bank of Finland; Bank of Finland Institute for Emerging Economies (BOFIT) (2021)
    BOFIT Forecast for China 1/2021
    In the second half of 2020, China witnessed a rapid recovery from the covid-19 outbreak. Growth was supported by robust exports and economic stimulus measures geared to boosting fixed investment. China’s overall growth prospects, however, remain clouded by persisting structural imbalances further undermined by economic stimulus measures during the covid crisis. Due to the low base of 2020, the apparently strong economic growth this year will settle back to lower levels in the years ahead. Despite rapid recovery, the covid crisis has left the economy more vulnerable. Moreover, external uncertainties have increased, particularly with the efforts of the United States to lessen the interdependence of the two countries. China continues to postpone necessary policy reforms that would improve productivity. The latest five-year plan (2021–2025) calls for increased self-sufficiency and even more government intervention in the economy.
  • Bank of Finland; Bank of Finland Institute for Emerging Economies (BOFIT) (2021)
    BOFIT Forecast for China 2/2021
    Stimulus spending on the corporate sector and fixed investment, together with a strong export performance, have helped China recover rapidly from a pandemic-induced slowdown in the first half of 2020. While rapid recovery and last year’s low basis assure high on-year GDP growth figure this year, the speedy phase of economic recovery is over and lower growth lies ahead. China is struggling with a shrinking working-age population and high levels of debt that hinder deployment of capital to other uses. Moreover, there has been little progress in productivity enhancing reforms. While higher-than-expected growth is possible if consumer demand strengthens markedly, the risk of below-forecast growth has also increased during the pandemic. Growth could be severely impacted if debt becomes unsustainable, financial market disruptions generate uncertainty that spreads to the real economy or foreign relations hit an impasse.
  • Bank of Finland; Bank of Finland Institute for Emerging Economies (BOFIT) (2021)
    BOFIT Forecast for Russia 1/2021
    We have raised our economic forecast for Russia from last autumn to reflect the rise of oil prices and price expectations. The impacts of covid-19 on Russia were also less severe than anticipated. We see Russia’s GDP recovering from last year’s dip to growth of almost three per cent this year and next. Significant uncertainties continue to surround the outlook. Russia and the rest of the world may struggle longer with covid, oil markets remain sensitive, and, like many economies, the Russian economy is at an inflection point with regards to recovery. Growth will slow after next year, approaching its long-term future trajectory.
  • Bank of Finland; Bank of Finland Institute for Emerging Economies (BOFIT) (2021)
    BOFIT Forecast for Russia 2/2021
    The forecast for the Russian economy has been revised upward on improved prospects for global economic growth and Russian exports. Oil prices and the expectations are also higher than in March. GDP should rise more than 3.5 % this year from last year’s low basis, before settling in 2022−2023 to slightly over 2.5 % p.a. on average. Several uncertainties surround the forecast. There could be unexpected changes in the course of the covid pandemic, global growth and oil prices. The return of international travel and the release of assets piled up by households last year can also significantly affect private consumption. Improved government revenues create opportunities for more generous budget spending.
  • Kaaresvirta, Juuso (ed.) (2021)
    BOFIT Weekly : Yearbook
  • Kaaresvirta, Juuso; Laakkonen, Helinä (2021)
    BOFIT Policy Brief 5/2021
    China became the world’s largest lender to emerging and developing economies over the past decade. At the same time, concerns on the debt sustainability of many of these countries have grown. Some countries have found themselves struggling to repay their loans and China has had to renegotiate debt restructurings bilaterally. As covid-19 pandemic hit many of the borrowers hard in 2020, China committed with all other G20 countries to the Debt Service Suspension Initiative (DSSI) to temporarily suspend official bilateral debt payment of 73 beneficiary countries. While China’s overseas lending remain opaque, there is little evidence that China intentionally practices “debt-trap diplomacy.”
  • Kang, Shulong; Dong, Jianfeng; Yu, Haiyue; Cao, Jin; Dinger, Valeriya (2021)
    BOFIT Discussion Papers 4/2021
    This paper investigates how government-led banking liberalization affects credit allocation by banks using as a quasi-natural experiment the establishment of city commercial banks (CCBs) in China. Based on more than three million corporate financial statements spanning over 16 years, we find that the establishment of CCBs led to a 6–14 % drop in debt funding for private firms, as well as a 1–2 % rise in their funding costs. At the same time, private infrastructure firms enjoyed a nearly 6 % increase in debt funding and more than 100-basis-point drop in interest costs despite their inferior credit quality. The debt financing of private firm appears most severely affected in municipalities where officials face high promotional pressures or fiscal constraints.
  • Borisova, Ekaterina; Ivanov, Denis (2021)
    BOFIT Discussion Papers 09/2021
    In this study, we use random assignment of vignettes that feature optimistic and pessimistic scenarios with respect to vaccine safety and efficacy on a sample of roughly 1,600 Russians in order to gauge public support for anti-pandemic measures under various scenarios. Negative information on vaccine safety and efficacy reduces support for the anti-pandemic measures among individuals who fear Covid-19 and were initially supportive of government restrictions. These individuals tend to be old, and therefore vulnerable to Covid-19, and politically active. This loss of support is strongest for economically costly measures such as banning of large gatherings and the shuttering of non-essential businesses. Mask-wearing, which involves only minor costs, finds broad acceptance. We interpret the reactions in light of adaptation, fatigue over Covid-19 restrictions, and fatalism. The political consequences of non-pharmaceutical measures to deal with a pandemic include loss of public support over time, erosion of trust in government, and political backlash.
  • Mäkinen, Mikko (2021)
    BOFIT Discussion Papers 8/2021
    Can a major financial crisis trigger changes in a bank’s risk-taking behavior? Using the 2008 Global Financial Crisis as a quasi-natural experiment and a difference-in-differences approach, I examine whether the worst crisis-hit Russian banks – the banks that have strong incentives to behavior-altering changes – can decrease their post-crisis exposure to risk. A shift in risk-taking behavior by these banks indicates the learning hypothesis. The findings are mixed. The evidence concerning credit risk is inconsistent with the learning hypothesis. On the other hand, the evidence concerning solvency risk is consistent with the learning hypothesis and corroborates evidence from the Nordic countries (Berglund and Mäkinen, 2019). As such, bank learning from a financial crisis may not depend on the institutional context and the level of development of national financial market. Several robustness checks with alternative regression specifications are provided.
  • Fungáčová, Zuzana; Kerola, Eeva; Weill, Laurent (2021)
    BOFIT Discussion Papers 3/2021
    This work examines the impact of bank efficiency on the bank lending channel in China. Using a sample of 175 Chinese banks over the period 2006–2017, we investigate how the reaction of the loan supply to monetary policy actions depends on a bank’s efficiency. While bank efficiency does not exert an impact on the effectiveness of monetary policy transmission overall, it does favor the transmission of monetary policy for banks with low loan-to-deposit ratios. In addition, the expansion of shadow banking activities has been associated with a positive impact of bank efficiency on monetary policy transmission. These results suggest that bank efficiency may influence the bank lending channel in certain cases.
  • Beckmann, Joscha; Comunale, Mariarosaria (2021)
    BOFIT Discussion Papers 11/2021
    This paper assesses the financial channel of exchange rate fluctuations for emerging countries and the link to the conventional trade channel. We analyze whether the effective exchange rate affects GDP growth, the domestic credit and the global liquidity measure as the credit in foreign currencies, and how global liquidity affects GDP growth. We make use of local projections in order to look at the shocks’ transmission covering 11 emerging market countries for the period 2000Q1–2016Q3. We find that foreign denominated credit plays an important macroeconomic role, operating through various transmission channels. The direction of effects depends on country characteristics and is also related to the policy stance among countries. We find that domestic appreciations increase demand regarding foreign credit, implying positive effects on investment and GDP growth. However, this is valid only in the short-run; in the medium-long run, an increase of credit denominated in foreign currency (for instance, due to apeiation) decreases GDP. The financial channel works mostly in the short run except for Brazil, Malaysia, and Mexico, where the trade channel always dominates. Possibly there is a substitution effect between domestic and foreign credit in the case of shocks in exchange rate.
  • Saka, Orkun; Ji, Yuemei; De Grauwe, Paul (2021)
    BOFIT Discussion Papers 10/2021
    We first present a simple model of post-crisis policymaking driven by both public and private interests. Using a novel dataset covering 94 countries between 1973 and 2015, we then establish that financial crises can lead to government interventions in financial markets. Consistent with a public interest channel, we find post-crisis interventions occur only in democratic countries. However, by using a plausibly exogenous setting -i.e., term limits- muting political accountability, we show that democratic leaders who do not have re-election concerns are substantially more likely to intervene in financial markets after crises, in ways that may promote (obstruct) private (public) interests.
  • Kaaresvirta, Juuso; Kerola, Eeva; Nuutilainen, Riikka; Parviainen, Seija; Solanko, Laura (2021)
    BOFIT Policy Brief 4/2021
    China is by far the world’s largest consumer of primary energy. Its vast energy demands are a leading issue for global energy use, driving pollution trends and prices on commodity markets. Despite huge increases in non-fossil capacity from nuclear and renewables, China still burns tremendous amounts of coal to meet its primary energy needs. Domestic energy consumption has risen faster than energy production, and thereby increased China’s dependence on energy imports. China is the world’s largest polluter, so any effort on the country’s part towards cleaner energy has major implications for global decarbonisation efforts. This overview comprises ten briefs on China’s energy sector. They cover recent developments in energy use and the shifting dynamics in primary power generation aimed at meeting China’s energy needs.
  • De Haas, Ralph; Martin, Ralf; Muûls, Mirabelle; Schweiger, Helena (2021)
    BOFIT Discussion Papers 6/2021
    We use data on 11,233 firms across 22 emerging markets to analyze how credit constraints and low-quality firm management inhibit corporate investment in green technologies. For identification we exploit quasi-exogenous variation in local credit conditions and in exposure to weather shocks. Our results suggest that both financial frictions and managerial constraints slow down firm investment in more energy efficient and less polluting technologies. Complementary analysis of data from the European Pollutant Release and Transfer Register (E-PRTR) corroborates some of this evidence by revealing that in areas where banks deleveraged more after the global financial crisis, industrial facilities reduced their carbon emissions by less. On aggregate this kept local emissions 15% above the level they would have been in the absence of financial frictions.
  • Paustyan, Ekaterina (2021)
    BOFIT Discussion Papers 2/2021
    This paper studies the distribution of politically motivated intergovernmental transfers in Russia focusing on the case of the 2018 FIFA World Cup. It investigates what factors have accounted for the selection of the 2018 FIFA World Cup venues. Qualitative Comparative Analysis of 14 cases reveals that well-connected political elites were able to secure the right for their regions to host the championship and, as a result, to extract additional funds from the center. These findings are in line with the argument that the regional governments in Russia play an important role in the distribution of politically sensitive transfers. Taking into account that these transfers have been increasing over the past years, there is no surprise that the regional elites have developed various lobbying strategies and mechanisms for attracting them.
  • Korhonen, Iikka (2021)
    BOFIT Policy Brief 9/2021
    This paper updates my earlier calculations on Russia’s long-run growth potential using a standard growth accounting framework in which GDP growth depends on available labor, capital and efficiency in combining them, i.e. total factor productivity. Russia’s economy has grown relatively slowly during the past decade, partly because of declining labor force. In my revised framework, growth recovers after the negative COVID-19 shock, but remains subdued as the working-age population continues to dwindle. Productivity growth remains lower than in the early 2000s, while average GDP growth settles at approximately 1.5% p.a.
  • Simola, Heli; Solanko, Laura (2021)
    BOFIT Policy Brief 7/2021
    The past two decades have witnessed a major transformation of global energy markets. While growth in energy demand now comes from emerging economies, and technologies critical to oil and natural gas production have seen dramatic advances, the biggest changes in global energy markets lie ahead. For countries to meet their ambitious climate goals, demand for conventional energy sources must fall significantly and be accompanied by a massive shift in investment to renewable energy sources. Such changes can have major implications for the Russian economy, which depends heavily on oil and gas. This brief provides an overview of the latest trends in Russia’s oil & gas sector in the context of evolving global energy markets.
  • Simola, Heli (2021)
    BOFIT Policy Brief 2/2021
    The Covid-19 pandemic has hit international trade hard, creating concerns of serious disruptions to global value chains (GVCs). This paper provides a preliminary analysis on the development of GVC trade during the current crisis with a focus on the internal and external trade of the EU. The potential consequences of the pandemic and other key factors for GVCs are discussed on the basis of a review of recent literature. We find that trade overall has been hit hard by the pandemic, but not GVC trade in particular. The sector of transport equipment makes a notable exception. Our analysis suggests that the Covid-19 crisis will not necessarily lead to a major restructuring of GVCs, but could fortify several trends shaping GVC development. While several factors limit future expansion of GVCs, the requisite complexity and high restructuring costs of existing GVCs make it unlikely that they will be dismantled anytime soon.