Review of Keynesian Economics

Export-led growth vs growth-led exports: what matters for the Brazilian growth experience after trade liberalization?*

Ricardo Azevedo Araujo * and Joanílio Rodolpho Teixeira * and Cristiane Soares *

Keywords: Export-led growth, growth-led exports, cumulative causation, Granger causality test


In this paper, we study the Brazilian growth experience after trade liberalization by testing both the export-led growth (ELG) and the growth-led exports (GLE) hypotheses through econometric tests between exports and gross domestic output (GDP). Although the paper provides further evidence that after openness neither ELG nor GLE hypotheses can satisfactorily explain the Brazilian growth experience, when disaggregated data is adopted it is possible to identify some sectors such as intermediate goods, commodities, and manufactured products whose performance is strongly correlated with real GDP. These results suggest that a disaggregated approach enhances our understanding of the Brazilian growth experience after trade liberalization.

Author Notes

A preliminary version of this paper was presented at the XI International Colloquium, ‘Global Crisis and the Need for Paradigm Change,’ held in Brasilia, Brazil, 6–7 May 2014. We would like to thank the participants of the colloquium and in particular Thomas Palley and an anonymous referee for helpful comments. The usual disclaimer applies. E-mail: and

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