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Publisher : Elsevier - Science Direct (الزویر - ساینس دایرکت)
Journal : Procedia Economics and Finance, Volume 5, 2013, Pages 251–259
This paper examines the relationship between economic growth, exports and government debt of Greece over the period 1960-2011. We investigate this relationship using the vector error correction models (VECM) and we employ Granger causality technique in order to explore the presence of causality among these variables. The results show that both short and long run relationships exist among these variables. Specifically, the results show that there is a unidirectional Granger causality that runs from exports to economic growth as well as from economic growth to government debt, whereas there is no short run causal relationship between exports and government debt. In the long run, the results show that there is a unidirectional Granger causality that runs from economic growth to government debt.
The relationship between economic growth and exports has drawn the attention of researchers both theoretically and empirically. A series of empirical studies have been conducted to investigate the role of exports and economic growth and to examine the hypothesis whether a causal relationship exists between these two variables. Exports are regarded as an engine which promotes economic growth and hence increases the rewards of factors of production. Moreover, exports open opportunities for investments in the economies of all countries and as a result a high level of income and saving is created leading again to growth. The importance of exports and its impact on economic growth raises the question about the nature of the relationship between these two macroeconomic variables. However, it leaves out some other relevant variables such as government debt, inflation, exchange rate, etc. that could have significant relationship with the two aforementioned variables.Bivariate causality studies provided conflicting empirical results for several countries. This situation may be due to the misspecification of the causal model used in these studies because of the omission of an important third variable such as government debt. The omission of government debt could seriously bias the empirical causality results between exports and economic growth on countries where the research was conducted. The economic situation in Greece has undergone many difficulties during the last years due to bad management of public money, the increase of corruption, the bribery of public servants and the violation of law. On the examined paper, in all fiscal years since 1960, the government’s revenue was smaller than its expenditure, causing fiscal deficits that are covered by borrowing from both internal and external sources. Government debt may have a positive or a negative impact on economic growth depending on its uses. This could affect the economy positively when the government uses it for investment-oriented projects such as infrastructure, power, and the agriculture sector. However, it could have a negative impact when it is employed for private and public consumption. In general, a lower level of total government debt affects the economic growth positively, but this relationship becomes negative at high levels. The specific turning points are 35-40 percent for the debt-to-GDP ratio and 160-170 percent for the debt-to-exports ratio. The lower the first ratio (the higher the second ratio) the better is the impact on economic growth . In Greece, government debt (percent of GDP) was at low levels until 1990. The government debt-GDP ratio started to grow steadily from 1991 to reach 160.8% in 2011. The objective of this study is to investigate the impact of exports in shaping the economic growth for the case of Greece with the inclusion of government debt as a third variable. Cointegration analysis based on Johansen procedure is used for this purpose. Also, causal relationship between these variables is applied using Granger causality test. The data used in this study cover the period from 1960 until 2011. This paper is organized in five sections. Section 2 presents a literature review. Section 3 presents correlations between economic growth, exports and external debt. Section 4 provides data source and methodological framework. The empirical results are presented in Section 5 and finally the concluding remarks are contained in section 6.
نتیجه گیری انگلیسی
Few are the econometric studies which have examined the relationship between economic growth, exports and government (foreign) debt of Greece. This study analyses empirically the causal relations among economic growth, exports, and government (foreign) debt in Greece, over a period of 50 years from 1960 to 2011. Public debt has become an increasingly serious problem for Greece and it is due to unexamined public expenditures, bureaucracy, tax evasion and corruption. The government debt as a percentage of GDP has begun to develop steadily since 1991 in order to reach 160.8% in 2011. According to the World Bank, when the external debt of a country reaches 80% of its GDP, it becomes sustainable. In order to reduce its debt burden, Greece has to focus on fiscal policy measures. These fiscal policy measures can be changes in tax rate, government consumption and public expenditures. In order to clarify whether exports and government debt cause economic growth or vice versa, a vector autoregressive model is developed. Moreover, Granger causality technique is used to assess the direction of causation. The results show that we get a unilateral causal relationship in the short run from exports to economic growth and from economic growth to external debt while there is no causation between exports and external debt. In the long run there is a causal one-way relationship from economic growth to external debt. The presence of a causal link between exports and growth has implications of great importance on development strategies for developing countries. If exports cause economic growth, growth will be a necessary condition for the country to expand its exports even more. Our findings provide evidence to support the export-led growth hypothesis. Thus, exports are important in fuelling economic growth.