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The trade creation effect of immigrants: evidence from the remarkable case of Spain

  • Giovanni Peri
  • Francisco Requena-Silvente

This paper investigates the immigration-trade link using data on individual exporting transactions and immigrants in Spanish provinces between 1995 and 2008. We quantify the impact of new immigrants on the extensive margin (number of transactions) and intensive margin (average value per transaction) of exports. We find that immigrants significantly increase exports and that the effect is almost entirely due to an increase in the extensive margin. Consistent with the idea that immigrants reduce the fixed cost of exporting, we find stronger effects for differentiated goods and for countries that are culturally distant from Spain.

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Article provided by Canadian Economics Association in its journal Canadian Journal of Economics.

Volume (Year): 43 (2010)
Issue (Month): 4 (November)
Pages: 1433-1459

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Handle: RePEc:cje:issued:v:43:y:2010:i:4:p:1433-1459
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  1. Christian Broda & David E. Weinstein, 2006. "Globalization and the Gains from Variety," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 121(2), pages 541-585, May.
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  8. Sourafel Girma & Zhihao Yu, 2002. "The link between immigration and trade: Evidence from the United Kingdom," Review of World Economics (Weltwirtschaftliches Archiv), Springer, vol. 138(1), pages 115-130, March.
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  11. Wagner, Don & Head, Keith & Ries, John, 2002. "Immigration and the Trade of Provinces," Scottish Journal of Political Economy, Scottish Economic Society, vol. 49(5), pages 507-25, December.
  12. José V. Blanes, 2005. "Does Immigration Help to Explain Intra-Industry Trade? Evidence for Spain," Review of World Economics (Weltwirtschaftliches Archiv), Springer, vol. 141(2), pages 244-270, July.
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  14. Anthony Briant & Pierre-Philippe Combes & Miren Lafourcade, 2009. "Product complexity, quality of institutions and the pro-trade effect of immigrants," PSE Working Papers halshs-00566772, HAL.
  15. José V. Blanes & Joan A. Martín-Montaner, 2006. "Migration Flows and Intra-Industry Trade Adjustments," Working Papers 06.04, Universidad Pablo de Olavide, Department of Economics.
  16. Dunlevy, James A. & Hutchinson, William K., 1999. "The Impact of Immigration on American Import Trade in the Late Nineteenth and Early Twentieth Centuries," The Journal of Economic History, Cambridge University Press, vol. 59(04), pages 1043-1062, December.
  17. Mark G. Herander & Luz A. Saavedra, 2005. "Exports and the Structure of Immigrant-Based Networks: The Role of Geographic Proximity," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 87(2), pages 323-335, May.
  18. David Card, 1997. "Immigrant Inflows, Native Outflows, and the Local Labor Market Impacts of Higher Immigration," NBER Working Papers 5927, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  19. 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.
  20. Catherine Co & Patricia Euzent & Thomas Martin, 2004. "The export effect of immigration into the USA," Applied Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 36(6), pages 573-583.
  21. James E. Rauch, 1996. "Networks versus Markets in International Trade," NBER Working Papers 5617, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  22. Keith Head & John Ries, 1998. "Immigration and Trade Creation: Econometric Evidence from Canada," Canadian Journal of Economics, Canadian Economics Association, vol. 31(1), pages 47-62, February.
  23. James A. Dunlevy, 2006. "The Influence of Corruption and Language on the Protrade Effect of Immigrants: Evidence from the American States," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 88(1), pages 182-186, February.
  24. Elhanan Helpman & Marc Melitz & Yona Rubinstein, 2006. "Trading Partners and Trading Volumes," DEGIT Conference Papers c011_022, DEGIT, Dynamics, Economic Growth, and International Trade.
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