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The employment effects of trade policy reform in Myanmar

Ayoki, Milton (2020): The employment effects of trade policy reform in Myanmar.

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This paper investigates employment responses to trade liberalisation in a developing economy, Myanmar. Using data from the 2014 Census and the 2017, labour force survey and previous surveys contained in Myanmar Statistical Yearbook, 2017, we find that trade liberalization did not affect the relative size of industry sectors in terms of employment. The OLS results finds support for the theoretical predictions of differential responses to trade reforms between sectors. Conversely, while empirical support is found for tariff reduction in influencing sector level employment, the tariff predictors are weaker overall than the sector productivity and competitiveness (in export market) predictors—implying that trade policy reforms need to be correctly tailored to raising productivity of labour force and sector competitiveness if their impact on employment is to be effectively realised.

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