Maureen Were on Is Export-led Growth A Mirage? The Case of Kenya

WIDER Seminar Series

Maureen Were on is export-led growth a mirage? The case of Kenya

Maureen Were will present at the WIDER Seminar Series on 10 April 2019. 

Abstract – Is export-led growth a mirage? The case of Kenya

The role of exports in promoting economic growth has been widely acknowledged. However, despite trade liberation and export promotion policies, Kenya’s export performance is still sluggish. The paper analyses the relationship between exporting and growth performance in Kenya using time series data. Notwithstanding efforts towards diversification of exports over time, exports are still strongly geared towards primary agricultural goods. Whereas the empirical results indicate a positive long run relationship between exporting and output, the impact of exporting on output growth is found to be statistically insignificant in the short run. Nonetheless, analysis using disaggregated export data shows a statistically significant impact of manufactured exports on economic growth. The results also indicate that imports influence short run and long run output growth by facilitating acquisition of foreign capital goods and technology, which improve the competitiveness of economy. There is need to revamp export-led growth through enhanced competitiveness and value addition avenues such as regional and global value chains.

About the speaker

Maureen Were has a PhD in economics with a wide experience in economic research and policy, macroeconomic modelling, monetary policy and gender analysis. She has worked at the Central of Bank, the Kenya Institute for Public Policy Research and Analysis, and taught at Egerton University and the Kenya School of Monetary studies.

In 2013 she competitively won a one-year Mo Ibrahim Leadership Fellowship award tenable at the World Trade Organization in Geneva. She has written various policy papers and published in refereed journals. Her research interests include macroeconomy, economic modelling and policy analysis, gender and development economics.

WIDER Seminar Series

The WIDER Seminar Series showcases recent and ongoing work on key topics in development economics. The weekly sessions held in Helsinki are open to local and visiting researchers, policy makers, and others interested in development topics. Click here to learn more.

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