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Rivalry in uncertain export markets: commitment versus flexibility

  • Dewit, Gerda
  • Leahy, Dermot

This Paper examines optimal trade policy in a two-period oligopoly model, with a home and a foreign firm choosing capital and output. Demand uncertainty, resolved in period two, gives rise to a trade-off between strategic commitment and flexibility in the firms’ investment decisions. When the government can commit to an export subsidy, it may choose to over- or under-subsidize to deter private-sector capital commitment. When the government chooses its trade policy flexibly, the relative value of commitment to the unsubsidized foreign firm is greater than to the subsidized home firm. Finally, a flexible subsidy regime is compared to free trade.

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Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Journal of International Economics.

Volume (Year): 64 (2004)
Issue (Month): 1 (October)
Pages: 195-209

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Handle: RePEc:eee:inecon:v:64:y:2004:i:1:p:195-209
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  1. Neary, J Peter & O'Sullivan, Paul, 1999. " Beat 'Em or Join 'Em? Export Subsidies versus International Research Joint Ventures in Oligopolistic Markets," Scandinavian Journal of Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 101(4), pages 577-96, December.
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  7. Rodrik, Dani, 1992. "Political economy and development policy," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 36(2-3), pages 329-336, April.
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  9. Spencer, Barbara J. & Brander, James A., 1992. "Pre-commitment and flexibility : Applications to oligopoly theory," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 36(8), pages 1601-1626, December.
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  12. Gerda Dewit & Dermot Leahy, 2001. "Fighting over Uncertain Demand: Investment Commitment versus Flexibility," Economics, Finance and Accounting Department Working Paper Series n1060201, Department of Economics, Finance and Accounting, National University of Ireland - Maynooth.
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  16. Goldberg, Pinelopi Koujianou, 1995. "Strategic Export Promotion in the Absence of Government Precommitment," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 36(2), pages 407-26, May.
  17. Steve Dowrick, 1986. "von Stackelberg and Cournot Duopoly: Choosing Roles," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 17(2), pages 251-260, Summer.
  18. Gal-Or, Esther, 1985. "First Mover and Second Mover Advantages," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 26(3), pages 649-53, October.
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