A Comprehensive Introduction to Regional Issues
Edited by Masahisa Fujita, Ikuo Kuroiwa and Satoru Kumagai
This book originated from the international joint research project on economic integration in East Asia conducted by the Institute of Developing Economies, JETRO (IDE-JETRO), Japan for the fiscal years 2007–08. This research project investigated various issues related to the economic integration such as institution building of FTAs, production networks and location choice of MNEs, R&D and innovation, infrastructure development and transport cost, international migration and service trade, monetary integration, and regional disparity and poverty. It also examined energy, environment, and agricultural issues. After encountering difficulties with import-substitution policies, East Asian economies changed their policy orientation and liberalized trade and investment. As a result, de facto integration preceded de jure integration especially in export-oriented industries, where import tariffs on intermediate inputs were eliminated on the condition that all such outputs are exported abroad. Furthermore, rapid progress in transport and communication technology – as well as vigorous infrastructure development in this region – significantly reduced trade and transport costs. In de jure integration, an important turning point came with the signing of the AFTA agreement in 1992, and de jure integration has gained momentum as other East Asian countries have followed suit in signing free trade agreements with intra-regional as well as extra-regional countries. De jure integration promotes free movement not only of goods, but also of services, capital, and natural persons. Thus it is expected to have a significant impact on economic activities in the region. With these perceptions in mind, we have attempted in this book to provide a common...