World Economy as Global Value Chains Network

DOI: 10.20542/0131-2227-2015-3-5-17

V. Kondrat’ev, Institute of World Economy and International Relations, Russian Academy of Sciences (IMEMO), 23 Profsoyuznaya Str., Moscow, 117997, Russian Federation (

Abstract. World trade and production are increasingly structured around “global value chains” (GVCs). A value chain identifies the full range of activities that firms undertake to bring a product or a service from its conception to its end use by final consumers. Technological progress, cost, access to resources and markets and trade policy reforms have facilitated the geographical fragmentation of production processes across the globe according to the comparative advantage of the locations. This international fragmentation of production is a powerful source of increased efficiency and firm competitiveness. Today, more than half of world manufactured imports are intermediate goods (primary goods, parts and components, semi-finished products), and more than 70% of world services imports are intermediate services. The emergence of GVCs during the last two decades has implications in many areas, including trade, investment and industrial development. Some of these implications have been explored in recent OECD work but the empirical evidence on GVCs remains limited. The last few years have witnessed a growing number of case studies on the globally integrated value chains at the product level, but such analyses only depict the situation for a specific product. The main objective of the article is to provide more and better evidence allowing to examine the position of countries within international production networks. The author deals with quantitative indicators that give a more accurate picture of the integration and position of countries in GVCs. A detailed assessment of global value chains is provided in six industries: agriculture and food products, chemicals, electrical and computing machinery, motor vehicles, business services, financial services.

Keywords: global value chain, trade policy, vertical integration, fragmentation of production, regional organization

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For citation:
Kondratev V. World Economy as Global Value Chains Network. World Eonomy and International Relations, 2015, no. 3, pp. 5-17.

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