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International Trade in Cultural Goods: An Assessment of Caribbean Exports

Lorde, Troy and Alleyne, Antonio and Trotman, Cherise (2017): International Trade in Cultural Goods: An Assessment of Caribbean Exports.

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The objectives of this study were to describe trends in cultural goods exports in the Caribbean, estimate their impact on regional economic growth and calculate their export potential, over the period 1991-2015. Over this period, cultural goods exports growth was very inconsistent; there were subperiods of positive growth with differing rates, negative growth, a spike and recovery. At the same time, regional output grew steadily. For the period, cultural goods exports totalled $6.3 bn., 0.02% of global cultural goods exports. Visual Arts and Crafts comprised almost 95% of this sum. The Dominican Republic was the largest exporter from the Caribbean. Other key exporters were Barbados, Cuba, the Bahamas, Jamaica, and Trinidad and Tobago. The USA was the single largest importer. The study found that cultural goods exports had no significant impact on economic growth for the full sample under study. However, a split of the sample uncovered two contrasting periods of cultural goods exports-related economic growth, the first period with a positive impact and the second with a negative impact, roughly equal in magnitude. These results are consistent with the long-run trends observed in both cultural goods exports and GDP.

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