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Skills, Investment and Exports from Manufacturing Firms in Africa

Author

Listed:
  • M. Soderbaum
  • F. Teal

Abstract

It has been argued that Africa will not be able to export manufactures as it lacks the necessary skills. This study uses panel data from Ghana to ask how skills have impacted on manufacturing investment and exports in the 1990s. Two dimensions of skills are defined and measure. The first is that observable in the education and experience of the workforce. The second is the underlying efficiency with which the firm operates. The latter is shown to be a significant determinant of both investment and exports. These exports are relatively capital intensive; unskilled labour-intensive exports remain negligible. Possible reasons for these outcomes are discussed.

Suggested Citation

  • M. Soderbaum & F. Teal, 2000. "Skills, Investment and Exports from Manufacturing Firms in Africa," Journal of Development Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 37(2), pages 13-43.
  • Handle: RePEc:taf:jdevst:v:37:y:2000:i:2:p:13-43
    DOI: 10.1080/713600067
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    Cited by:

    1. Maiti, Dibyendu & Bhattacharyya, Chandril, 2020. "Informality, enforcement and growth," Economic Modelling, Elsevier, vol. 84(C), pages 259-274.
    2. Arne Bigsten & Paul Collier & Stefan Dercon & Marcel Fafchamps & Bernard Gauthier & Jan Willem Gunning & Abena Oduro & Remco Oostendorp & Catherine Pattillo & Måns Soderbom & Francis Teal & Albert Zeu, 2004. "Do African Manufacturing Firms Learn from Exporting?," Journal of Development Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 40(3), pages 115-141.
    3. Waldkirch, Andreas & Ofosu, Andra, 2010. "Foreign Presence, Spillovers, and Productivity: Evidence from Ghana," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 38(8), pages 1114-1126, August.
    4. Frazer, Garth, 2005. "Which Firms Die? A Look at Manufacturing Firm Exit in Ghana," Economic Development and Cultural Change, University of Chicago Press, vol. 53(3), pages 585-617, April.
    5. Fatou Cisse, 2017. "Do Firms Learn by Exporting or Learn to Export? Evidence from Senegalese Manufacturing Firms," Journal of African Development, African Finance and Economic Association (AFEA), vol. 19(1), pages 133-160.
    6. Admasu Shiferaw & Degol Hailu, 2016. "Job creation and trade in manufactures: industry-level analysis across countries," IZA Journal of Labor & Development, Springer;Forschungsinstitut zur Zukunft der Arbeit GmbH (IZA), vol. 5(1), pages 1-36, December.
    7. Irene Brambilla & Nicolas Depetris Chauvin & Guido Porto, 2015. "Wage and Employment Gains from Exports: Evidence from Developing Countries," Working Papers 2015-28, CEPII research center.
    8. KAFANDO, Namalguebzanga, 2014. "L'industrialisation de l'Afrique: l'importance des facteurs structurels et du régime de change
      [The industrialization of Africa: the importance of structural factors and exchange rate regime]
      ," MPRA Paper 68736, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    9. Ehouman Williams V. Ahouakan & M'Baye Diene, 2017. "Does School Quality Matter? Primary Schools Characteristics and Child Labour Intensity in Senegal," Journal of African Development, African Finance and Economic Association (AFEA), vol. 19(1), pages 113-131.
    10. Edwards, Lawrence & Balchin, Neil, 2008. "Trade related business climate and manufacturing export performance in Africa: A firm-level analysis," MPRA Paper 32863, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    11. Adugna Lemi & Ian Wright, 2020. "Exports, foreign ownership, and firm-level efficiency in Ethiopia and Kenya: an application of the stochastic frontier model," Empirical Economics, Springer, vol. 58(2), pages 669-698, February.
    12. Bento, Antonio M. & Jacobsen, Mark R. & Liu, Antung A., 2018. "Environmental policy in the presence of an informal sector," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 90(C), pages 61-77.
    13. Arne Bigsten & Mulu Gebreeyesus, 2009. "Firm Productivity and Exports: Evidence from Ethiopian Manufacturing," Journal of Development Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 45(10), pages 1594-1614.
    14. Sangeeta Pratap & Erwan Quintin, 2006. "The Informal Sector in Developing Countries: Output, Assets and Employment," WIDER Working Paper Series RP2006-130, World Institute for Development Economic Research (UNU-WIDER).
    15. Arne Bigsten & Paul Collier & Stefan Dercon & Marcel Fafchamps & Bernard Gauthier & Jan Willem Gunning & Abena Oduro & Remco Oostendorp & Catherine Pattillo & Måns Soderbom & Francis Teal & Albert Zeu, 2004. "Do African Manufacturing Firms Learn from Exporting?," Journal of Development Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 40(3), pages 115-141.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Investments; Exports; Manufacturing Firms; Skills; Africa; Ghana;

    JEL classification:

    • O12 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - Microeconomic Analyses of Economic Development
    • D24 - Microeconomics - - Production and Organizations - - - Production; Cost; Capital; Capital, Total Factor, and Multifactor Productivity; Capacity

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