Regional specialization, imported intermediate inputs of productive services and export sophistication index: empirical evidence from countries along the Belt and Road

【Abstract】The Belt and Road Initiative is an important initiative to construct a new pattern for China’s opening up in the 13th Five-Year Plan period, and it can also accelerate the cooperation among countries. By cross-border input-output database combined with other sufficient information over 2001–2012, we studied the potential connection among downstreamness, imported technology spillover, imported intermediate inputs of imported and heterogeneous export sophistication. The research reaches the following findings. Firstly, inputs of imported productive services exert significantly positive impact on overall export sophistication, but this effect can be divided into the positive effect on manufacturing and the negative effect on service export sectors, respectively. Secondly, taking the interaction effect into account, we found that industrial specialization adjusts the promotion effect of imported intermediate inputs of productive services, which also partially occurs in the manufacturing sectors. Lastly, the technology spillover effect of import has significantly positive effects on the downstream countries in industrial specialization, which can promote both service and manufacturing sectors.

【Keywords】 productive services; industrial chain specialization; export sophistication; the Belt and Road Initiative;


【Funds】 National Natural Science Foundation of China (71503213) Major Project of Sichuan Social Sciences Planning of China (SC16ZD04) Fundamental Research Funds for the Central Universities of China for Southwest University of Finance and Economics (JBK161103) Innovative Team Project (JBK150508)

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(Translated by GENG Qingyou)


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    [2]. (2) See the research of Chen and Liu (2015). In the initial research, the discount rate is set as 5% and it is set as 20% for robustness test. [^Back]

    [3]. (3) The 64 countries covered by this paper include China, Mongolia, Russia, India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Afghanistan, Nepal, Bhutan, Sri Lanka, Maldives, Vietnam, Laos, Cambodia, Thailand, Malaysia, Singapore, Indonesia, Brunei, the Philippines, Myanmar, Poland, the Czech Republic, Slovakia, Hungary, Slovenia, Croatia, Romania, Bulgaria, Serbia, Montenegro, Macedonia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Albania, Estonia, Lithuania, Latvia, Ukraine, Belarus, Moldova, Turkey, Iran, Syria, Iraq, The United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Lebanon, Oman, Qatar, Bahrain, Yemen, Jordan, Israel, Palestine, Armenia, Georgia, Azerbaijan, Egypt, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Uzbekistan, and Turkmenistan. [^Back]

    [4]. (4) Eora 26 divides 26 industries into the following: 1–26 respectively correspond to agriculture, fishing, mining and quarrying, food & beverages, textiles and wearing apparel, wood and paper, petroleum, chemical and non-metallic mineral products, metal products, electrical and machinery, transport equipment, other manufacturing, recycling, electricity, gas and water, construction, maintenance and repair, wholesale trade, retail trade, hotels and restaurants, transport, post and telecommunications, financial intermediation and business activities, public administration, education, health and other services, private households, others, re-export and re-import. [^Back]


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This Article


CN: 11-1692/F

Vol , No. 05, Pages 68-79

May 2017


Article Outline


  • Introduction
  • 1 Theoretical analysis
  • 2 Empirical method
  • 3 Data sources and variable design
  • 4 Empirical results and analysis
  • 5 Conclusion and policy suggestion
  • Footnote