Volume 34, Issue 1, 2004
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- Demographic Transition and Optimal Saving in Four Asian Countries (R.S. Guest, I.M. McDonald)
- Modelling the Regional Economic Consequences of Efficiency Gains in the Utilities Sector (J. Giesecke, J.R. Madden)
- Effects of Housing Allowances on Housing Prices in Australia: A Cointegration Analysis (M. Chowdhury, G. Mallik)
- An Empirical Analysis of Sugarcane Production in Fiji, 1970-2000 (P.K. Narayan)
- Commodity Currencies: A Macroeconomic Interpretation (M. Polasek)
- Attitudes to Entry Fees to National Parks: Results and Policy Implications from a Queensland Case Study (C. Wilson, C. Tisdell)
Demographic Transition and Optimal Saving in Four Asian Countries
R.S. Guest, I.M. McDonald
This paper reports projections of the impact of prospective demographic change on the pattern of optimal national saving for four Asian countries: Philippines, Malaysia, Hong Kong and Singapore for the period from 2000 to 2050. The method is simulation of a Ramsey model of optimal saving for a small open economy with vintage capital. The simulations show that variations on prospective demographic change cause variations in the patterns of optimal rates of national saving, reinforcing the idea that evaluations of a country's saving performance should take account of its prospective demographic structure.
Modelling the Regional Economic Consequences of Efficiency Gains in the Utilities Sector
J. Giesecke, J.R. Madden
There have been a number of computable general equilibrium (CGE) studies quantifying the economic impact of national competition policy (NCP). They typically involve long-run comparative static simulations with the most important shock being productivity improvements. These improvements are set equal to the productivity gap between relevant Australian industries and overseas counterparts (as measured by such methods as data envelopment analysis). The size of the estimated gaps and the assumption that NCP will eliminate them has been called into question. This paper develops an alternative approach that uses historical modelling with a dynamic multiregional CGE model (FEDERAL-F) to uncover changes, consistent with observed data, in the rate of productivity improvements in the utilities sector have had on the economies of Tasmania and mainland Australia, concentrating in particular on the Tasmanian results.
Effects of Housing Allowances on Housing Prices in Australia: A Cointegration Analysis
M. Chowdhury, G. Mallik
This paper investigates the impact of the housing allowance for first homebuyers provided by the Federal government, together with nominal interest rate and employment on housing prices in Australia using cointegration analysis and an error correction model. Granger causality is also tested. Results show that the growth rates in average house prices for established houses and for project homes are Granger caused jointly by employment growth and interest rate increases. The cointegration analysis shows that that housing prices are positively affected by falling interest rates and rising employment. The recent housing allowance is found to have positive and significant effect on housing prices in Australia.
An Empirical Analysis of Sugarcane Production in Fiji, 1970-2000
Fiji is a small island country in the South Pacific. Sugar is its oldest industry, being in the vanguard of economic growth and development for over a century. Today the oldest industry, not only in Fiji but also in the South Pacific Island countries, is shrivelling and is poised on the precipice of collapse. The literature to date has singled out expiring land leases and the inability of the government to resolve this issue as the key to the current calamity. This paper aims to estimate a sugarcane production model for Fiji, delineating the short-run and long-run determinants. It expands the Cobb-Douglas production function in specifying the sugarcane production model and uses time series data (1970-2000) in estimating it. The major findings are that area harvested and fertiliser (capital), labour force and prices paid to sugarcane farmers have made positive contributions to sugarcane production in both the short- and long-run. The finding on the statistical significance of area harvested has direct relevance to the current land problems in Fiji. It is envisaged that the results will appeal to Fijian policy makers and that a speedy solution to the problem of expiring and non-productive use of sugarcane land will be achieved.
Commodity Currencies: A Macroeconomic Interpretation
The paper investigates if there is a theoretical basis for the 'commodity currency' phenomenon in small open economies exporting Okun's 'auction goods' under short-term capacity constraints. It is shown under a variety of assumed conditions that commodity prices map into currency movements which are in line with those expected by the 'commodity currency' hypothesis and that this holds irrespective of whether trade is initially balanced or not. The case of a 'perfect' commodity currency may be said to arise where the domestic cost and price effects of fluctuating commodity prices are fully neutralised by the accompanying movements in nominal exchange rates. It is further shown that while the present regime of floating exchanges and high international capital mobility limits the scope on primary exporting countries for stimulating output and employment when commodity prices are high, the system is less prone to inflationary excesses than the previous regime of fixed or regulated exchange rates.