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Effects of Islamic religiosity on bilateral trust in trade: The case of Turkish exports

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  • Lo Turco, Alessia
  • Maggioni, Daniela

Abstract

Using a rich firm level data set for Turkish manufacturing, we test whether sharing similar religious beliefs with potential contracting parties drives a firm’s first time entry into export markets. We exploit variation in the practice of Islam across Turkish NUTS3 regions and we find that firms located in regions characterised by stronger religiousness are more likely to enter export destinations with a higher share of Muslims among their population. This result is robust to the control for past trade, common language, cultural and migration ties as well as for selective trade policy in favour of politically connected religious business groups. In particular, religious proximity eases export entry for producers of “trust intensive” goods, it favours subsequent foreign market entries and reduces the export exit probability. All in all, our evidence supports an export enhancing effect of religious proximity working through export sunk costs reduction rather than through similarity in preferences.

Suggested Citation

  • Lo Turco, Alessia & Maggioni, Daniela, 2018. "Effects of Islamic religiosity on bilateral trust in trade: The case of Turkish exports," Journal of Comparative Economics, Elsevier, vol. 46(4), pages 947-965.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:jcecon:v:46:y:2018:i:4:p:947-965
    DOI: 10.1016/j.jce.2018.02.001
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    2. Kurt, Yusuf & Sinkovics, Noemi & Sinkovics, Rudolf R. & Yamin, Mo, 2020. "The role of spirituality in Islamic business networks: The case of internationalizing Turkish SMEs," Journal of World Business, Elsevier, vol. 55(1).
    3. Kwok, Diana W.P. & Meschi, Pierre-Xavier & Bertrand, Olivier, 2020. "In CEOs we trust: When religion matters in cross-border acquisitions. The case of a multifaith country," International Business Review, Elsevier, vol. 29(4).
    4. Davide Luca, 2018. "Picking Winners at the Ballot Box: Votes and Local Economic Growth in Turkey," Working Papers 1232, Economic Research Forum, revised 10 Oct 2018.

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Islam; Export entry; Uncertainty; Religious proximity;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • F11 - International Economics - - Trade - - - Neoclassical Models of Trade
    • F14 - International Economics - - Trade - - - Empirical Studies of Trade
    • D22 - Microeconomics - - Production and Organizations - - - Firm Behavior: Empirical Analysis
    • D80 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - General
    • N30 - Economic History - - Labor and Consumers, Demography, Education, Health, Welfare, Income, Wealth, Religion, and Philanthropy - - - General, International, or Comparative

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