Structural Reforms, Productivity and Technological Change in Latin America

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Profound structural reforms have moved Latin America and the Caribbean from closed, state-dominated economies to ones that are more market-oriented and open to the rest of the world. This publication looks at the effects of these reforms in an effort to determine whether such expectations as growth, increased productivity, the creation of new jobs and greater equity have been fulfilled. Focusing on technological change, the publication also examines the impact of the reforms on the process of innovation.



The impact of structural reforms on employment, the trade balance in manufacturing and the relative productivity gap between small and large firms

The two previous chapters examined how labour productivity growth and the labour productivity gap with the international frontier evolved over the last two decades in several countries of the region, both in manufacturing and in non-manufacturing sectors such as telecommunications and mining. The available empirical evidence shows that some countries (and industries) managed to partially close the gap with the international frontier –represented by United States manufacturing productivity– while others did not. The evidence also suggests that new problems have emerged as a result of market failures, information asymmetries, monopolistic practices and so forth.


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