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Trade Liberalization, Firm Performance and Labor Market Outcomes in the Developing World What Can We Learn From Micro-Level Data?

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  • Paolo Epifani

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Abstract

We review the micro-level evidence on the effects of trade and investment liberalization in the developing world. The main findings can be summarized as follows. 1) There is evidence of trade-induced productivity gains; 2) These gains mainly stem from the intra-industry real-location of resources among firms with different productivity levels and: 3) they are larger in import competing sectors; 4) There is no evidence of significant scale efficiency gains. Indeed, unilateral trade liberalization is often associated with a reduced scale efficiency; 5) There is evidence of a pro-competitive effect of trade liberalization; 6) There is no evidence either of learning-by-exporting effects or of beneficial spillover effects from foreign owned to local firms; 7) There is evidence of skill upgrading induced either by technology imports, or by trade-induced reallocations of market shares in favor of plants with higher skill-intensity; 8) There is no evidence of trade-induced increases in labor demand elasticities; 9) There is no evidence of substantial employment contraction in import competing sectors.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by KITeS, Centre for Knowledge, Internationalization and Technology Studies, Universita' Bocconi, Milano, Italy in its series KITeS Working Papers with number 138.

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Length: 55 pages
Date of creation: Nov 2002
Date of revision: Feb 2003
Handle: RePEc:cri:cespri:wp138

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Keywords: Plant-level evidence; Firm heterogeneity; Productivity growth; Scale efficiency; Technology transfer; Wage inequality; Labor demand elasticity;

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References

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Citations

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Cited by:
  1. Meschi, Elena & Vivarelli, Marco, 2009. "Trade and Income Inequality in Developing Countries," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 37(2), pages 287-302, February.
  2. Elena Meschi & Erol Taymaz & Marco Vivarelli, 2009. "Trade, Technology and Skills: Evidence from Turkish Microdata," Jena Economic Research Papers 2009-097, Friedrich-Schiller-University Jena, Max-Planck-Institute of Economics.
  3. Sule Ozler & Kamil Yilmaz, 2009. "Productivity response to reduction in trade barriers: evidence from Turkish manufacturing plants," Review of World Economics (Weltwirtschaftliches Archiv), Springer, vol. 145(2), pages 339-360, July.
  4. Petia Topalova, 2004. "Trade Liberalization and Firm Productivity," IMF Working Papers 04/28, International Monetary Fund.
  5. Meschi, Elena & Vivarelli, Marco, 2007. "Globalization and Income Inequality," IZA Discussion Papers 2958, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  6. Boubakri, Narjess & Cosset, Jean-Claude & Guedhami, Omrane, 2005. "Liberalization, corporate governance and the performance of privatized firms in developing countries," Journal of Corporate Finance, Elsevier, vol. 11(5), pages 767-790, October.
  7. Pierre, Gaelle & Scarpetta, Stefano, 2007. "How labor market policies can combine workers'protection with job creation : a partial review of some key issues and policy options," Social Protection Discussion Papers 41439, The World Bank.
  8. Sivadasan, Jagadeesh & Slemrod, Joel, 2008. "Tax law changes, income-shifting and measured wage inequality: Evidence from India," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 92(10-11), pages 2199-2224, October.
  9. Puja Vasudeva Dutta, 2004. "Trade Protection and Inter-industry Wages in India," PRUS Working Papers 27, Poverty Research Unit at Sussex, University of Sussex.
  10. Aldaba, Rafaelita M., 2010. "Does Trade Protection Improve Firm Productivity? Evidence from Philippine Micro Data," Discussion Papers DP 2010-32, Philippine Institute for Development Studies.
  11. Pierre, Gaelle & Scarpetta, Stefano, 2004. "Employment regulations through the eyes of employers - do they matter and how do firms respond to them?," Policy Research Working Paper Series 3463, The World Bank.
  12. Gunjan Sharma, 2006. "Competing or Collaborating Siblings? Industrial and Trade Policies in India," Working Papers 0610, Department of Economics, University of Missouri.
  13. Gibson, Bill, 2005. "The transition to a globalized economy: Poverty, human capital and the informal sector in a structuralist CGE model," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 78(1), pages 60-94, October.

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