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A model of demand, productivity and foreign location decision among Taiwanese firms

Listed author(s):
  • Aw, Bee Yan
  • Lee, Yi
Registered author(s):

    We develop a theoretical framework to examine the relative importance of firm demand and productivity in firm decisions to export and where to locate foreign direct investments. The model shows that the equilibrium firm decision depends on product technology, consumer preference for product quality, fixed investment costs of establishing a foreign subsidiary, transportation costs and relative wages. Our empirical results confirm the predictions of the theoretical model. Firm-level demand and productivity components are important in explaining the decision to participate in foreign markets with their relative importance depending on the firm's organizational form (exports versus FDI) and the destination of the investments. In general, FDI firms are more productive than exporting firms regardless of FDI destinations. FDI firms also have a higher demand component than exporters and this demand component is stronger than productivity. Finally, among FDI firms, while those with a high demand index and productivity have a significantly higher propensity to invest in high-income countries, firm productivity is the sole determinant of firms undertaking FDI in low-income countries.

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    File URL: http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0022199613001426
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    Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Journal of International Economics.

    Volume (Year): 92 (2014)
    Issue (Month): 2 ()
    Pages: 304-316

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    Handle: RePEc:eee:inecon:v:92:y:2014:i:2:p:304-316
    DOI: 10.1016/j.jinteco.2013.12.005
    Contact details of provider: Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/inca/505552

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    1. Bee Yan Aw & Mark J. Roberts & Daniel Yi Xu, 2011. "R&D Investment, Exporting, and Productivity Dynamics," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 101(4), pages 1312-1344, June.
    2. Kalina Manova & Zhiwei Zhang, 2009. "Export Prices Across Firms and Destinations," NBER Working Papers 15342, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    3. Baldwin, Richard & Harrigan, James, 2007. "Zeros, Quality and Space: Trade Theory and Trade Evidence," CEPR Discussion Papers 6368, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    4. Alla Lileeva & Daniel Trefler, 2010. "Improved Access to Foreign Markets Raises Plant-level Productivity…For Some Plants," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 125(3), pages 1051-1099.
    5. Yeaple, Stephen & Helpman, Elhanan & Melitz, Marc, 2004. "Export versus FDI with Heterogeneous Firms," Scholarly Articles 3229098, Harvard University Department of Economics.
    6. Paula Bustos, 2009. "Trade Liberalization, Exports and Technology Upgrading: Evidence on the Impact of MERCOSUR on Argentinean Firms," 2009 Meeting Papers 1029, Society for Economic Dynamics.
    7. Chen, Maggie Xiaoyang & Moore, Michael, 2009. "Location decision of heterogeneous multinational firms," MPRA Paper 33482, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    8. Lucia Foster & John Haltiwanger & Chad Syverson, 2005. "Reallocation, Firm Turnover, and Efficiency: Selection on Productivity or Profitability?," NBER Working Papers 11555, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    9. Pablo Fajgelbaum & Gene M. Grossman & Elhanan Helpman, 2015. "A Linder Hypothesis for Foreign Direct Investment," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 82(1), pages 83-121.
    10. Aw, Bee Yan & Lee, Yi, 2008. "Firm heterogeneity and location choice of Taiwanese multinationals," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 76(2), pages 403-415, December.
    11. Matthieu Crozet & Keith Head & Thierry Mayer, 2009. "Quality sorting and trade: Firm-level evidence for French wine," Sciences Po publications 7295, Sciences Po.
    12. Amit Khandelwal, 2010. "The Long and Short (of) Quality Ladders," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 77(4), pages 1450-1476.
    13. Johnson, Robert C., 2012. "Trade and prices with heterogeneous firms," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 86(1), pages 43-56.
    14. Juan Carlos Hallak & Jagadeesh Sivadasan, 2009. "Firms' Exporting Behavior under Quality Constraints," NBER Working Papers 14928, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    15. Daniel Yi Xu & Mark Roberts, 2012. "A Structural Model of Dmand, Cost, and Export Market Selection for Chinese Footwear Producers," 2012 Meeting Papers 294, Society for Economic Dynamics.
    16. Rosario Crinò & Paolo Epifani, 2012. "Productivity, Quality and Export Behaviour," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 122(565), pages 1206-1243, December.
    17. Aw, Bee Yan & Lee, Yi, 2008. "Firm heterogeneity and location choice of Taiwanese multinationals," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 75(1), pages 167-179, May.
    18. Melitz, Marc J, 2002. "The Impact of Trade on Intra-Industry Reallocations and Aggregate Industry Productivity," CEPR Discussion Papers 3381, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    19. Eric A. Verhoogen, 2008. "Trade, Quality Upgrading, and Wage Inequality in the Mexican Manufacturing Sector," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 123(2), pages 489-530.
    20. Jože P. Damijan & Črt Kostevc & Sašo Polanec, 2010. "From Innovation to Exporting or Vice Versa?," The World Economy, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 33(3), pages 374-398, 03.
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