by R. David Ranson
National Center for Policy Analysis
October 24, 2013
Exports are part of the cost side of the economy; imports are the benefit the country gains in return for that cost. Economic policies that promote exports at the expense of imports, such as currency depreciation, reduce the growth of GDP over time. That shift substantially lessens long-term gains in the real value of exports produced by a cheap dollar. Public policy can manipulate the currency and the economy to increase the amount that exports contribute to national output (GDP). But a country that succeeds in this effort has impoverished itself. The phrase "beggar my neighbor" is an understatement.