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Firm Size, Technological Capabilities and Market-oriented Policies in Mauritius

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  • Ganeshan Wignaraja

Abstract

Mauritius is an outlier in sub-Saharan Africa in terms of its impressive growth in garment exports since it adopted outward-oriented policies in the early 1980s. Little, however, is known about the role of technological factors in the behaviour of Mauritian garment exporters. Using recent methodological developments in the literature on technological capabilities, this paper explores this issue. It constructs a "technology index" and conducts econometric analysis on factors affecting enterprise-level technological development and export performance in a sample of enterprises. Firm size, technical manpower, training expenditures and external technical assistance are positively related to the technology index, suggesting that investments in human capital and information (both facilitated by size) improve technological performance. The technology index and foreign ownership have positive and significant effects on export performance. The technology index is a robust tool of empirical research and can be used to analyse the technological record of enterprises in adjusting countries.

Suggested Citation

  • Ganeshan Wignaraja, 2002. "Firm Size, Technological Capabilities and Market-oriented Policies in Mauritius," Oxford Development Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 30(1), pages 87-104.
  • Handle: RePEc:taf:oxdevs:v:30:y:2002:i:1:p:87-104
    DOI: 10.1080/136008101200114912
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    1. Narayanan, K., 1998. "Technology acquisition, de-regulation and competitiveness: a study of Indian automobile industry," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 27(2), pages 215-228, June.
    2. Mani, Sunil, 1999. "Public Innovation Policies and Developing Countries In a Phase of Economic Liberalisation," UNU-INTECH Discussion Paper Series 02, United Nations University - INTECH.
    3. Biggs, T. & Shah, M. & Srivastava, P., 1995. "Technological Capabilities and Learning in African Enterprises," Papers 288, World Bank - Technical Papers.
    4. Mytelka, Lynn & Farinelli, Fulvia, 2000. "Local Clusters, Innovation Systems and Sustained Competitiveness," UNU-INTECH Discussion Paper Series 5, United Nations University - INTECH.
    5. Homi Katrak, 1996. "Trade policies, enterprise characteristics and technological effort in developing countries," Journal of International Development, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 8(1), pages 39-51.
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