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Is It Worthwhile for Indonesia to Rush into a Free Trade Deal with Japan?

Discussion Papers

No.092

March 2007

ABSTRACT

This report represents a preliminary attempt to refine some basic ideas on the potential impact Indonesia might experience from a free trade arrangement with Japan, using a forward-looking, multi-regional, multi-sectoral applied general equilibrium model of global trade to capture growth effects through capital accumulation paying attention to the changes in the patterns of interregional capital flows that might happen even before the policy change occurs. The simulation results revealed that the welfare gains of rushing into trade liberalization with Japan are not so large. This makes out that taking time over negotiations might be the best choice for Indonesia if the government places priority on convincing the Indonesian people that a free trade deal with Japan will definitely bring positive effects, while proceeding rapidly might be the answer if the country is serious about recovering the welfare levels that might be lowered by free trade arrangements among Malaysia, the Philippines, and Japan.

Keywords: applied general equilibrium; economic growth; forward-looking; free trade agreement; interregional capital flows.
JEL classification: C68, D58, D90, F15, F41, O41.

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Please note that discussion papers are works in various stages of progress and most have not been edited and proofread and may contain errors of fact or judgment. Revised versions of these papers may subsequently appear in more formal publication series. The views expressed in this publication are those of the author(s). The IDE does not guarantee the accuracy of the data included and accepts no responsibility for any consequences arising from its use.