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Working Smart and Small

The Role of Knowledge-based and Service Industries in Growth Strategies for Small States

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Small states face serious challenges for development due to their size, remoteness and vulnerability. In recent years, the prospects for small states have deteriorated further due to preference erosion and the emergence of larger competitors such as India and China. Working Smart and Small suggests how small states can reposition themselves in the global economy and move into knowledge-based and service industries.



Part I provides an overview of general factors stimulating or constraining the development of services sector and trade in services. It also identifies key trends and provides analysis.



Part II gives six case study examples of how some small states have promoted knowledge-based and service industries in their economies. The small states studied, from different regions and income groups, are Botswana, Mauritius, St. Lucia, Singapore, United Arab Emirates and Vanuatu. The studies cover the performance and supporting factors in five promising service sectors: the financial sector, information and communication technologies, education, professional services and tourism.



Part III considers the policy implications.



This book will be of particular interest to economic policy-makers and researchers working on issues of concern to small states.

English

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Introduction

This book examines the promotion of knowledge-based and service industries in small states. It was commissioned by the Small States section of the Economic Affairs Division of the Commonwealth Secretariat. This request followed the Small States Agenda proposed in the Commonwealth/World Bank Joint Task Force Report of April 2000. The review of this agenda, entitled ‘Toward an outward-oriented development strategy for small states: issues, opportunities and resilience building’, was prepared in August 2006. Both reports identify serious challenges for development in small states due to their small size, remoteness and vulnerability. The review suggests that over the past few years, the prospects for small states have deteriorated further due to (future) preference erosion and the emergence of new, large competitors. It proposes that small states need to reposition themselves in the global economy and move into knowledge-based and service industries. Growth strategies in the new competitive environment will also increasingly rely on the promotion of knowledge-based and service industries. The study highlighted in this book suggests how this might be done.

English

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