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The Dynamism of Mexican Exports: Lost in (Chinese) Translation?


  • Gallagher, Kevin P.
  • Moreno-Brid, Juan Carlos
  • Porzecanski, Roberto


Summary This paper analyzes the extent to which Mexican exports have penetrated US markets in recent years, and juxtaposes such an analysis with the performance of China. We find that Mexico's main non-oil exports are losing dynamism, and their relative share in the US market is either declining or growing slower than China's. This trend is a new one, and begins after China's entry into the WTO. A number of factors could explain these findings. These include: (i) the real appreciation of the real exchange rate of the peso relative to the US dollar combined with the trend toward undervaluation of the Chinese currency, (ii) the decline of public investment in Mexico, especially in infrastructure, (iii) limited access to bank credit in Mexico, and (iv) the absence of government policy in Mexico to help spur technological innovation and to strengthening its domestic backward and forward linkages.

Suggested Citation

  • Gallagher, Kevin P. & Moreno-Brid, Juan Carlos & Porzecanski, Roberto, 2008. "The Dynamism of Mexican Exports: Lost in (Chinese) Translation?," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 36(8), pages 1365-1380, August.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:wdevel:v:36:y:2008:i:8:p:1365-1380

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Jean Imbs & Romain Wacziarg, 2003. "Stages of Diversification," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 93(1), pages 63-86, March.
    2. Mesquita Moreira, Mauricio, 2007. "Fear of China: Is There a Future for Manufacturing in Latin America?," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 35(3), pages 355-376, March.
    3. Jorge Blázquez-Lidoy & Javier Rodríguez & Javier Santiso, 2006. "Angel or Devil? China's Trade Impact on Latin American Emerging Markets," OECD Development Centre Working Papers 252, OECD Publishing.
    4. Robert C. Feenstra & Hiau Looi Kee, 2007. "Trade Liberalisation and Export Variety: A Comparison of Mexico and China," The World Economy, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 30(1), pages 5-21, January.
    5. Sanjaya Lall, 2000. "The Technological Structure and Performance of Developing Country Manufactured Exports, 1985-98," Oxford Development Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 28(3), pages 337-369.
    6. Keld Laursen, 1998. "Revealed Comparative Advantage and the Alternatives as Measures of International Specialisation," DRUID Working Papers 98-30, DRUID, Copenhagen Business School, Department of Industrial Economics and Strategy/Aalborg University, Department of Business Studies.
    7. Máttar, Jorge & Moreno Brid, Juan Carlos & Peres Núñez, Wilson, 2002. "Foreign investment in Mexico after economic reform," Estudios y Perspectivas – Sede Subregional de la CEPAL en México 10, Naciones Unidas Comisión Económica para América Latina y el Caribe (CEPAL).
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