With the shrinking current account surplus in Japan's BOP in recent years, many have become fearful of a perpetual decline of the Japanese economy. From ‘de-industrialization’, ‘loss of employment’, and ‘shrinking trade and current account balances’ to ‘weakening competitiveness’ and ‘loss of capacity to grow’, one tends to put the blame on the growth dynamics of developing Asia. This article shows that one should not blindly subscribe to this ‘threat of Asia’ argument. One should reconfirm that domestic factors such as saving behaviors and the structural environment for investment set the trend for a country's BOP in the longer term.
In short to medium terms, however, BOP is largely affected by developments in trade, trade arrangements, and foreign direct investment (FDI). In order to cope in a well-balanced manner with this emotionally-charged ‘threat of Asia’ argument in light of the deepening economic integration with developing Asia, this article provides analyses on both sides of the ‘S-I≡X-M’ macro identity as well as on the factors that unite the two sides of this crucial identity. These are the analyses regarding the 1) relative sizes of savings-investment gaps, and 2) trends in age-dependency ratios both in global and Asian scales; 3) changing competitive structure of Asian exporters, and 4) impacts of the emerging free trade agreements in Asia; and 5) interactions between trade and investment flows in the APEC region, and 6) impacts of Japan's FDI to developing Asia.
The saving-investment gap of developing Asia has been relatively small, relative to the size of Japan's saving capacity. However, identified demographic trends point to an existence of time limit of fifteen to twenty years for the self-supported investment dynamism in East and South-East Asia. For Japan to revive and retain its growth dynamism, confronted with competitive pressure from rising Asia, it is imperative for Japan to vitalize inflowing FDI as well as domestic investment. Like international trade, cross-border investment is a positive-sum game. However for any country to benefit from this game, two-way flows should be promoted. The current study confirms that this is the key policy prescription for Japan's ‘coexistence with Asia’.
Currently, different studies use different conceptual and operational definitions of crises. The resulting crisis identifications are inconsistent. The different crisis identifications can lead to inconsistent conclusions and policy formulation even if the same analytical framework is applied. Also, most studies focus on only a few types of crises. This narrow focus on crises may not capture the multidimensionality of crises in which different crisis types occur simultaneously in the 1990s. Seven crisis types are analyzed namely (i) liquidity type banking crises, (ii) solvency type banking crises, (iii) balance of payments crises, (iv) currency crises, (v) debt crises, (vi) growth rate crises and (vii) financial crises. Crisis data are collected from fifteen emerging economies in 1980-2002 on a quarterly basis. The crisis identification exercise finds that multidimensionality in which different crisis types occur in short-periods is one of the most important characteristics of recent crises. Further, Granger causality test in five Asian economies (Indonesia, Korea, Malaysia, the Philippines and Thailand) in 1980-2002 finds that currency crises tend to trigger other types of crises, and therefore exchange rate management is essential.
Mercado Comun del Cone Sur (henceforth, MERCOSUR) was inaugurated as a tariff union to create EU-type free trade market between four countries (Argentina, Brazil, Paraguay and Uruguay) in January 1995.
At present, Bolivia and Uruguay adopt a crawling band and a crawling peg exchange rates system, respectively, in order to stabilize exchange rates against the U.S. dollar. On the other hand, Paraguay adopts a managed floating exchange rates system, and Argentina, Brazil, and Chile adopt free-floating exchange rates system. For this reason, the bilateral exchange rate between two countries in MERCOSUR, such as Brazilian real—Bolivian nuevo boliviano would fluctuates, when exchange rates of real against the U.S. dollar change. Since an increase of exchange rates volatility acts so as to increase exchange rate risk, if export and import trader are risk-averse agent, there is a possibility that exchange rates volatility has a negative impact on international trade flows.
The purpose of this paper is to examine the impact of real effective exchange rates volatility of Brazilian real on Brazil-MERCOSUR trade flows.
As a result, we find that volatility of real effective exchange rate of real has a significant negative effect on trade flows for MERCOSUR countries in the short run and long-run. This means that it is necessary for Brazil to adopt exchange rate system that stabilizes the currency basket reflecting the relation of foreign trade in order to expand the trade for MERCOSUR countries.
The purpose of this study is to illustrate the quality of outsider's authority in overseas technical assistance and then to clarify the position in that context from anthropological viewpoint. In this study, a joint research project called “MABO,” which was organized between three institutes of Solomon Islands and a Japanese university, is actually examined through ethnographical description.
From 1990s, “Participatory Development” including PRA (Participatory Rural Appraisal) and PLA (Participatory Learning and Action) has been a basic concept of ODA and NGO activities. However, as Robert Chambers pointed out, power relation between subordinate indigenous people and dominant outsiders or supporters remains sustained in their activities. An ideal reality that the people participate in and the outsiders facilitate the people to promote a project has not yet been realized in effect. The position and the function of outsiders are main subject of discussion on development matters at present.
The MABO project on which I focus in this paper aimed to record and research traditional performances such as dance, song, technics and stories in ethnomusicological approach and to teach how to promote such cultural project for the members of Solomon institutes. It was also an opportunity for local people to re-activate their cultural activity in rural areas. The ethnography of the project represents polyphonically the process including the start, troubles, collision and misunderstandings among the actors concerned.
By analyzing outsiders' position and attitude in the context of MABO by using a concept “Melanesian bigman,” I point out that outsiders, especially Japanese outsiders in relation with Solomon Islander staff of the project and host community in rural areas, have been situated in a position with contradictory characteristics, “overt and covert.” However, the position can also be culturally rationalized if a code of conduct based on the bigman concept functions as a linkage between contradictory situations. Outsiders' authority should not always be seen as an object be removed. “Authentic” figure of outsider in a participatory project can be formed by cultural code of leadership.
Drawing on a thorough biographical review of key literature recently published in Japan, this essay discusses how the study of educational development in Japan has emerged and matured as a distinctive academic field and outlines key areas for future study. The evolution of this field in Japan can be classified into three periods: a pre 1990 period; a formative decade triggered by the World Conference on Education for All in Jomtien, Thailand, in 1990; and a developmental period since the World Education Forum in Dakar, Senegal, in 2000. In addition, the year 2003 is emphasized as a pivotal year in which several important books on educational development were published, advancing this area of study in Japan to an international stature.
Key areas for future study, as suggested in recently published books on educational development, include: going beyond the paradigm debates of the mid 1980s to early 1990s on the relationship between education and development; shifting emphasis from an overview of educational development and cooperation to more specific areas and issues; scrutinizing the methodology as a social science field; expanding the geographical coverage and comparing the experiences of Asia, Africa, Latin America, and the Arab world; examining new foci and approaches in education such as a sector-wide approach. The field of educational development in Japan has matured to a peer status with North America and Europe. If the recent rate of advancement continues, Japan may in the foreseeable future attain a leadership role in this area of study, owing to the productivity of Japanese researchers and professionals in numerous international undertakings.
Galasa is the abbreviation for “Group Approach for Locally Adapted and Sustainable Agriculture”. The present study is aimed at establishing the viewpoint that the Galasa of rice farmers in the Kerala state of India is an operationally efficient, economically productive and socially beneficial agricultural production practice. The field survey covered 120 farmers, who were operating in the Galasa rice fields and adjacent locations in the Palakkad District of Kerala state. Applying the Data Envelopment Analysis (DEA), a non-parametric frontier tool, the study proved that Galasa is an efficient agricultural production practice in terms of all efficiency measurements such as technical, scale, cost and allocative efficiencies. Boosting the rice yield from 3,287 kg/ha to 6,449 kg/ha and ensuring four times improvement in the profit, Galasa helps sustaining rice production in the state where foodgrain deficiency rose up to 80% of the total demand. On achieving the full-scale yield potential, Galasa can promote Kerala's self-sufficiency on foodgrains by reducing the deficiency level to 49%. Galasa, which insists organic farming and encourages the preservation of the remaining 310,521 hectares of area under rice, can contribute significantly to the environmental sustainability. By preventing the fast disappearance of rice fields, Galasa can also absorb 9.49% of the total agricultural labourers in Kerala. In summary, Galasa has to be widely adopted as a pragmatic approach for the sustenance of rice production in an economically productive manner. With its state-wide replication, Galasa could be a panacea for some of the persistent problems like foodgrain deficiency, unemployment and environmental degradation.
Zambia was an early innovator of adopting a sector-wide program for the agricultural sector in the early 1990s. “Agricultural Sector Investment Program (ASIP)” was implemented for six years from 1996 to 2001, under the leadership of the World Bank. The Zambian ASIP received attention from donor community as one of the firstimplemented sector-wide programs for agricultural sector development in Africa. However, its performance was not very satisfactory, with most major objectives unachieved. Impact on the poverty alleviation in rural areas was particularly disappointing. While sector-wide programs have been regarded as an effective way of enhancing ownership of recipient countries and harmonizing donor-funded projects/programs, the experience of the Zambian ASIP has shown that their implementation in the agricultural sector is more difficult than expected.
Having observed poor performance of the ASIP, many donors appear to have been discouraged from promoting donor coordination in the Zambian agricultural sector. It is observed that they tend to avoid direct assistance to the Ministry of Agriculture and implement their programs/projects by establishing independent implementation units outside the government structure. This is considered mainly due to low management capacity of the Ministry, particularly in financial management that was exposed during the ASIP implementation period. However, this situation is not appreciated since it will further deteriorate the government capacity.
On the other hand, Japanese technical assistance projects are traditionally based on the government-centered counterpart approach. This is related with Japan's ODA policy that has been emphasizing “self-efforts” and “self-help” of the governments of recipient countries. Although this approach could be effective in strengthening the government capacity, it is not necessarily the most effective way of realizing the development impact on poverty alleviation within a limited period since it usually takes a long time to improve the capacity of the government.
Accordingly, it is essential for the Government of Japan to establish an effective and efficient approach of implementing assistance projects while promoting coordination of other donors' activities in the sector. In doing so, lessons from the experience of the ASIP have to be taken into account.
As Hulme and Shepherd (2003) pointed out, a “context-specific strategy” and effective “forms of intervention” are indispensable to open up economic opportunities for chronically poor people. Setting foot on such an unexplored territory of poverty studies, this paper focuses on the landless in rural Bangladesh, the poorest category of the society, as a specific context and explores opportunities for them to diversify their livelihoods from dependence on day labour to a higher level for accumulation and reinvestment. Conventionally, employment and income generation for the rural poor has been implemented under two strategies: rural industrialisation and self-employment promotion. Rural industrialisation, based on the transfer from full-time to part-time farmers, has not included any prescription for landless labourers. A vast majority of self-employment projects, usually administered through provision of credit and training, has generated “livelihood enterprises” only for temporal survival, which rarely develop into micro-enterprises set on the path to long-term growth.
As an alternative approach to income generation, this paper highlights the emergence of single economic units formed by combining the economic activities of the landless with support from a sponsor. The sponsor is expected to function as a master trader to sub-contracted landless partners, and also as an intermediary or catalyst between the landless producers and other stakeholders in the rural economy such as private enterprises and landowners.
This paper attempts to embody this conceptual approach drawing upon field observation of two income-generating programmes, poultry rearing and pond fishery, implemented by a Bangladeshi NGO, Institute of Integrated Rural Development (IIRD). First, the proposed approach does not bring about an alternative to the current main income source, day labour, but an additional regular income source which builds a basis of household economy. Second, sub-contracting with the sponsor enables the landless to enter into previously inaccessible markets. Third, the intervention of the sponsor as an insider has successfully adopted cooperative functions, such as cooperative inputs purchase and cooperative shipment, excluding failures experienced by many outsider-led cooperatives. This alternative approach suggests that a paradigm shift is underway from helping poor people's enterprises survive to helping poor people improve their livelihoods as much as possible during their involvement in such a specially arranged opportunity.