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The effect of foreign service on trade volumes and trade partners

  • Rubén Segura-Cayuela

    ()

    (Banco de España)

  • Josep M. Vilarrubia

    ()

    (Banco de España)

It has been emphasized that international promotion activities such as state visits or the presence of embassies, consulates and export promotion agencies help foster trade when there are search costs and/or uncertainty. In this paper we try to disentangle the differential effect that foreign service (embassies and consulates) has on both the establishment of trade links with countries, and the effect on trade volumes with already existing trading partners (the extensive and intensive margins at the country level). Using the estimation procedure suggested by Helpman, Melitz and Rubinstein (2007) and a cross-section of 21 exporters and 162 importers as in Rose (2005), we find that the presence of a foreign service office in a given country increases the probability of trading with that partner between 11% and 18%, but that it has no effect on the volume of trade with already existing trading partners. We then proceed to evaluate the importance of the extensive margin at the sectoral level, finding that these probabilities are substantially larger for more differentiated sectors.

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File URL: http://www.bde.es/f/webbde/SES/Secciones/Publicaciones/PublicacionesSeriadas/DocumentosTrabajo/08/Fic/dt0808e.pdf
File Function: First version, April 2008
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Paper provided by Banco de Espa�a in its series Banco de Espa�a Working Papers with number 0808.

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Length: 40 pages
Date of creation: Apr 2008
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:bde:wpaper:0808
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  1. James E. Rauch, 1996. "Trade and Search: Social Capital, Sogo Shosha, and Spillovers," NBER Working Papers 5618, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. James E. Anderson & Eric van Wincoop, 2001. "Gravity with Gravitas: A Solution to the Border Puzzle," NBER Working Papers 8079, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  3. Mark J. Melitz, 2002. "The Impact of Trade on Intra-Industry Reallocations and Aggregate Industry Productivity," NBER Working Papers 8881, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  4. Elhanan Helpman & Marc Melitz & Yona Rubinstein, 2007. "Estimating Trade Flows: Trading Partners and Trading Volumes," NBER Working Papers 12927, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  5. Fernández-Val, Iván, 2009. "Fixed effects estimation of structural parameters and marginal effects in panel probit models," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 150(1), pages 71-85, May.
  6. Rubén Segura-Cayuela & Josep M. Vilarrubia, 2008. "Uncertainty and entry into export markets," Banco de Espa�a Working Papers 0811, Banco de Espa�a.
  7. Feenstra, Robert C, 2002. "Border Effects and the Gravity Equation: Consistent Methods for Estimation," Scottish Journal of Political Economy, Scottish Economic Society, vol. 49(5), pages 491-506, December.
  8. Rauch, James E., 1999. "Networks versus markets in international trade," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 48(1), pages 7-35, June.
  9. Lederman, Daniel & Olarreaga, Marcelo & Payton, Lucy, 2006. "Export Promotion Agencies: What Works and What Doesn't," CEPR Discussion Papers 5810, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  10. Juan Ruiz & Josep M. Vilarrubia, 2007. "The wise use of dummies in gravity models: export potentials in the Euromed region," Banco de Espa�a Working Papers 0720, Banco de Espa�a.
  11. Rose, Andrew K, 2005. "The Foreign Service and Foreign Trade: Embassies as Export Promotion," CEPR Discussion Papers 4953, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
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