Construction of Electronics Database for East Asian Countries and Empirical Analysis of International Competitiveness of Japanese Companies

Author Name MOTOHASHI Kazuyuki  (Faculty Fellow, RIETI)
Creation Date/NO. April 2010 10-J-028
Research Project Empirical Analyses Relating to IT and Productivity
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The international competitiveness of Japanese electronics firms is fading as firms in East Asian countries such as China, Korea, and Taiwan catch up. In this paper, we have constructed an electronics industry database from 1996 to 2005 for China, Korea, Japan, Taiwan, and the United States. It covers industrial statistics in these countries including trade and overseas production statistics, which makes it possible to control for global production activities of electronics firms. We have also evaluated the changes in Japanese firms' competitiveness by using trade specialization index and market share estimation. We find that Japanese firms have lost their competitive position vis-a-vis firms in other East Asian countries in the following sectors: consumer electronics and electrical appliances, computers and peripherals, communications equipment and semiconductor. In contrast, Japanese firms have gained ground in the electronics component and industrial machinery sectors.