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Public Intangibles: The Public Sector and Economic Growth in the SNA

This paper sets out a framework for the analysis of public investments, tangible and intangible, at the level of detail needed for the economic analysis of impacts of public policies influencing economic growth. The concept of capital in the public sector was broadened from mostly tangible (e.g. physical infrastructure) to include intangibles and long-lasting societal assets. Ultimately, we found that national accounts need to: impute a net return to government capital; disaggregate industries by institutional sector of origin; use industry capital compensation measured to include all public payments; and, where relevant, build crosswalks for components of government expenditure by function of government to industries.

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