Resources Science ›› 2020, Vol. 42 ›› Issue (8): 1489-1503.doi: 10.18402/resci.2020.08.05

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Impact of strategic and critical metals trade network characteristics on the upgrading of industrial structures

ZHU Xuehong1,2(), PENG Ting1, CHEN Jinyu1,2()   

  1. 1. Business school of Central South University, Changsha 410083, China
    2. Institute of Metal Resources Strategy, Central South University, Changsha 410083, China
  • Received:2020-02-19 Revised:2020-07-12 Online:2020-08-25 Published:2020-10-25
  • Contact: CHEN Jinyu E-mail:zhxh@csu.edu.cn;cjy2014@csu.edu.cn

Abstract:

In order to investigate the impact of strategic and critical metals trade network characteristics on the upgrading of industrial structures, we quantitatively characterized the topological characteristics of the network based on complex network analysis methods, using the trade data of the seven strategic and critical metals from 1996 to 2017. This study measured the degree of centrality from five dimensions: in-degree centrality, out-degree centrality, closeness centrality, betweenness centrality, and eigenvector centrality. We deciphered the roles and positions of countries in the trade network. Based on these, this study further constructed a panel regression model to examine how the characteristics of strategic and critical metals trade network impact the industrial structure upgrading. The research results show that: (1) The global strategic and critical metals trade network is loose and heterogeneous during 1996-2017 and shows the characteristics of a “small world”. (2) Individually, China, the United States, and Germany were important participants in global strategic and critical metals trade, occupying a central position in the trade network. (3) Further research found that closeness centrality and betweenness centrality showed a significant effect on promoting the upgrading of a country’s industrial structure. This effect was more prominent in low-income countries. But the influence of in-degree centrality, out-degree centrality, and eigenvector centrality were not obvious. China should adopt a more open trade policy and enhance its position in the division of labor in the global value chain to promote the optimization and upgrading of its industrial structure.

Key words: strategic and critical metals, trade network characteristics, complex network theory, industrial structure upgrading, centrality, small world characteristics