A RECONSIDERATION OF THE EXPORT-LED GROWTH PARADIGM IN NAMIBIA DURING 1990:Q1-2016:Q4
A large volume of empirical studies have conceded that international trade can propel development in various ways. This study evaluates the impact of trade on economic growth in the context of Namibia for the period 1990:Q1 to 2016:Q4. The study employed modern time series analysis technique (vector autoregression method) as against the direct application of the method of ordinary least squares regression. The annual data collated by the study were first transformed into quarterly data before estimating the model. The study was driven by four specific objectives. The empirical results arising from the study found that exports, real exchange rate and net foreign direct investment were positively related to economic growth as suggested by the estimated long-run equation. Moreover, the results obtained from the forecast error variance decomposition suggest that fluctuations in economic growth as a result of shocks were mainly explained by economic growth itself. This is not unusual. Moreover, amongst the three explanatory variables used in the model, real exchange rate and net foreign direct investment contributed more towards explaining changes pertaining to economic growth during the forecast horizon compared to exports. The findings of the study support a number of empirical studies that were reviewed. The study, inter alia, recommends the need for Namibia to put in place appropriate exports’ incentives that can potentially assist in boosting the country’s exports in regional and foreign markets. Besides, the study recommends the need for Namibia to invest enormously in transport and communications’ infrastructures, including renewable and non-renewable energy supplies. The study concludes by providing directions on further research opportunities pertaining to the issue under consideration.