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

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  • Dieter Pennerstorfer

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Abstract

In this article I analyze the export behavior 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 (Sinani and Hobdari, 2010; Silvente and Geménez, 2007) or financial factors (Berman and Héricourt, 2010)), but leave out the issue of migration. I combine detailed information coming from a questionnaire conducted among 8,300 firms on the export behavior to different countries with regional data on migration from the European Labor 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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Paper provided by European Regional Science Association in its series ERSA conference papers with number ersa12p954.

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Date of creation: Oct 2012
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Handle: RePEc:wiw:wiwrsa:ersa12p954

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  1. Jonathan Eaton & Samuel Kortum, 2004. "An Anatomy of International Trade: Evidence from French Firms," 2004 Meeting Papers 802, Society for Economic Dynamics.
  2. 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.
  3. Pamina Koenig & Florian Mayneris & Sandra Poncet, 2009. "Local export spillovers in France," PSE Working Papers halshs-00566142, HAL.
  4. Andrew B. Bernard & J. Bradford Jensen, 1997. "Exceptional Exporter Performance: Cause, Effect, or Both?," NBER Working Papers 6272, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  5. 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.
  6. 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.
  7. 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.
  8. Marc J. Melitz, 2003. "The Impact of Trade on Intra-Industry Reallocations and Aggregate Industry Productivity," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 71(6), pages 1695-1725, November.
  9. Giovanni Peri & Francisco Requena, 2009. "The Trade Creation Effect of Immigrants: Evidence from the Remarkable Case of Spain," NBER Working Papers 15625, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  10. Patricia Rice & Anthony J. Venables, 2004. "Spatial Determinants of Productivity: Analysis for the Regions of Great Britain," CEP Discussion Papers dp0642, Centre for Economic Performance, LSE.
  11. 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.
  12. 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.
  13. 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.
  14. 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.
  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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