RussiaASEAN: Trade and Global Value Chains

DOI: 10.20542/0131-2227-2015-8-25-39

K. Muradov, International Institute of Statistical Education, National Research University Higher School of Economics (NRU HSE); Department of Macroeconomic Statistics, School of Statistics and Data Analysis, Department of Economics, NRU HSE, 26, Shabolovka Str., Moscow, 119049, Russian Federation (

Abstract. Traditional trade statistics that originate in customs records is inadequate to measure the complex interdependencies in today’s globalized economy, or what is known as the global value chains. The article focuses on Russia–ASEAN trade. The author applies innovative methods of measuring trade in value added terms in order to capture the unobserved bilateral linkages behind the officially recorded trade flows. First, customs and balance of payments sources of bilateral trade data are briefly reviewed. For user, there are at least two inherent problems in those data: the inconsistencies in “mirror” trade flows and the attribution of the origin of a traded product wholly to the exporting country. This results in large discrepancies between Russian and ASEAN “mirror” trade data and, arguably, their low importance as each other’s trade partners. Next, the author explores new data from inter-country input-output tables that necessarily reconcile bilateral differences and offer greater detail about the national and sectoral origin or destination of traded goods and services. Relevant data are derived from the OECD-WTO TiVA database and are rearranged to obtain various estimates of Russia–ASEAN trade in value added in 2009. The main finding is that sizable amount of the value added of Russian origin is embodied in third countries’ exports to ASEAN members and ASEAN members’ exports to third countries. As a result, the cumulative flow of Russia’s value added to ASEAN members is estimated to be 62% larger than the direct gross exports, whereas for China and South Korea it is, respectively, 21% and 23% smaller. The indirect, unobserved value added flows can be largely explained by the use of Russian energy resources, chemicals and metals as imported inputs in third countries (China, South Korea) and ASEAN members’ own production. The contribution of these inputs is then accumulated along the value chain. Finally, the most important sectoral value chains are visualized for readers’ convenience. So far, it’s apparent that Russia is linked to ASEAN countries through intricate production networks and indirectly contributes to their trade with third countries.

Keywords: trade, statistics, international trade, global value chains, value added, input–output tables, ASEAN, Russia

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For citation:
Muradov K. RussiaASEAN: Trade and Global Value Chains. World Eonomy and International Relations, 2015, no. 8, pp. 25-39.

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