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Export, Migration, and Costs of Market Entry: Evidence from Central European Firms

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  • Dieter Pennerstorfer

    (WIFO)

Abstract

In this paper I analyse the export behaviour of firms located in different Central European countries (Austria, Hungary, Czech Republic and Slovakia) with respect to migration. Ever since the seminal article by Gould (1994) on immigrant links to their home country and due to empirical research following his contribution, it is a well established result that immigrants from a particular country spur exports to and imports from that destination. Chaney (2008) shows that a decrease in fixed costs of exporting increases the number of exporters (extensive margin), whereas a reduction in variable costs also increases the volume exported by each exporting firm (intensive margin). Empirical contributions using firm-level data focus on various aspects influencing costs of exporting (like spillover effects of nearby firms or financial factors), but leave out the issue of migration. I combine detailed information coming from a questionnaire conducted among 8,300 firms on the export behaviour to different countries with regional data on migration from the European Labour Force Survey (LFS). I find evidence that both the propensity to export and – to a much smaller extent – the volume of sales of exporting firms to a particular destination is higher for firms located in regions with a larger number of immigrants from that country. I conclude that migrants mainly reduce fixed costs of exporting.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by WIFO in its series WIFO Working Papers with number 405.

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Length: 33 pages
Date of creation: 04 Nov 2011
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:wfo:wpaper:y:2011:i:405

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Keywords: Firm-level data; Export destinations; Immigrants; Margins of trade;

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  1. KOENIG, Pamina & MAYNERIS, Florian & PONCET, Sandra, . "Local export spillovers in France," CORE Discussion Papers RP -2225, Université catholique de Louvain, Center for Operations Research and Econometrics (CORE).
  2. Nicolas Berman & Jérôme Héricourt, 2008. "Financial factors and the margins of trade : evidence from cross-country firm-level data," Documents de travail du Centre d'Economie de la Sorbonne bla08050, Université Panthéon-Sorbonne (Paris 1), Centre d'Economie de la Sorbonne.
  3. Jonathan Eaton & Samuel Kortum & Francis Kramarz, 2008. "An Anatomy of International Trade: Evidence from French Firms," NBER Working Papers 14610, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  4. Rice, Patricia & Venables, Anthony J. & Patacchini, Eleonora, 2006. "Spatial determinants of productivity: Analysis for the regions of Great Britain," Regional Science and Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 36(6), pages 727-752, November.
  5. Nowotny, Klaus & Pennerstorfer, Dieter, 2012. "Ethnic Networks and the Location Choice of Migrants in Europe," Working Papers in Economics and Finance 2012-7, University of Salzburg.
  6. Giovanni Peri & Francisco Requena-Silvente, 2010. "The trade creation effect of immigrants: evidence from the remarkable case of Spain," Canadian Journal of Economics, Canadian Economics Association, vol. 43(4), pages 1433-1459, November.
  7. Bernard, A., 1997. "Exceptional Exporter Performance: Cause, Effect, or Both?," Working papers 97-21, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Department of Economics.
  8. Krugman, Paul, 1980. "Scale Economies, Product Differentiation, and the Pattern of Trade," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 70(5), pages 950-59, December.
  9. James J. Heckman, 1976. "The Common Structure of Statistical Models of Truncation, Sample Selection and Limited Dependent Variables and a Simple Estimator for Such Models," NBER Chapters, in: Annals of Economic and Social Measurement, Volume 5, number 4, pages 475-492 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  10. White, Halbert, 1980. "A Heteroskedasticity-Consistent Covariance Matrix Estimator and a Direct Test for Heteroskedasticity," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 48(4), pages 817-38, May.
  11. Jonathan EATON, Samuel KORTUM, Francis KRAMARZ, 2008. "An Anatomy of International Trade : Evidence from French Firms” ~We examine the sales of French manufacturing ?rms in 113 destinations, including Franceitself. Several regularities stand out: (1) th," Working Papers 2008-29, Centre de Recherche en Economie et Statistique.
  12. Evis Sinani & Bersant Hobdari, 2010. "Export market participation with sunk costs and firm heterogeneity," Applied Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 42(25), pages 3195-3207.
  13. Gould, David M, 1994. "Immigrant Links to the Home Country: Empirical Implications for U.S. Bilateral Trade Flows," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 76(2), pages 302-16, May.
  14. Mark J. Melitz, 2002. "The Impact of Trade on Intra-Industry Reallocations and Aggregate Industry Productivity," NBER Working Papers 8881, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  15. Francisco Silvente & Juana Giménez, 2007. "Information Spillovers and the Choice of Export Destination: A Multinomial Logit Analysis of Spanish Young SMEs," Small Business Economics, Springer, vol. 28(1), pages 69-86, January.
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