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Irish firms' productivity and imported inputs

  • FORLANI, Emanuele


    (Center for Operations Research and Econometrics (CORE), Université catholique de Louvain (UCL), Louvain la Neuve, Belgium)

In this paper, we empirically analyze the evolution of firms’ productivity and how the efficiency changes with variations in the inputs’ origin. Using firm-level information on a sample of Irish firms, we assess the importance of the imported inputs’ quota for a firm’s efficiency, as well as starting import activity. The main findings are that an increase in the intensive margin of imports raises firms’ efficiency of domestic firms; in addition heterogeneous effects across firms are detected. Unlike the findings of most of the literature, there is weak evidence of self-selection in import activity; differently from previous research when we introduce fixed effects, the self-selection disappears. Instead, the few observed firms that start importing raise their productivity compared to non-importing firms; learning by importing is suspected. The results suggest an important policy implication: policies that favor the imports of intermediates enhance the productivity of domestic firms, making them more competitive in the international markets.

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Paper provided by Université catholique de Louvain, Center for Operations Research and Econometrics (CORE) in its series CORE Discussion Papers with number 2010015.

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Date of creation: 01 Apr 2010
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:cor:louvco:2010015
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  1. Holger Görg & Aoife Hanley & Eric Strobl, 2008. "Productivity effects of international outsourcing: evidence from plant-level data," Canadian Journal of Economics, Canadian Economics Association, vol. 41(2), pages 670-688, May.
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  5. Carlo Altomonte & Gábor Békés, 2010. "Trade Complexity and Productivity," CeFiG Working Papers 12, Center for Firms in the Global Economy, revised 25 Oct 2010.
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  7. Nicholas Bloom & Raffaella Sadun & John Van Reenen, 2007. "Americans Do I.T. Better: US Multinationals and the Productivity Miracle," NBER Working Papers 13085, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  8. Pinelopi Koujianou Goldberg & Amit Kumar Khandelwal & Nina Pavcnik & Petia Topalova, 2010. "Imported Intermediate Inputs and Domestic Product Growth: Evidence from India," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 125(4), pages 1727-1767.
  9. Andrew B. Bernard & J. Bradford Jensen & Peter K. Schott, 2009. "Importers, Exporters and Multinationals: A Portrait of Firms in the U.S. that Trade Goods," NBER Chapters, in: Producer Dynamics: New Evidence from Micro Data, pages 513-552 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  10. László Halpern & Miklós Koren & Adam Szeidl, 2015. "Imported Inputs and Productivity," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 105(12), pages 3660-3703, December.
  11. Francesco Caselli & Daniel J. Wilson, 2002. "Importing technology," Proceedings, Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco, issue Nov.
  12. Yeaple, Stephen & Helpman, Elhanan & Melitz, Marc, 2004. "Export versus FDI with Heterogeneous Firms," Scholarly Articles 3229098, Harvard University Department of Economics.
  13. Vogel, Alexander & Wagner, Joachim, 2008. "Higher Productivity in Importing German Manufacturing Firms: Self-Selection, Learning from Importing, or Both?," IZA Discussion Papers 3854, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  14. Joze P. Damijan & Jose de Sousa & Olivier Lamotte, 2008. "Does international openness affect productivity of local firms? Evidence from Southeastern Europe," LICOS Discussion Papers 21908, LICOS - Centre for Institutions and Economic Performance, KU Leuven.
  15. Davide Castellani & Francesco Serti & Chiara Tomasi, 2008. "Firms in International Trade: Importers and Exporters Heterogeneity in the Italian Manufacturing Industry," LEM Papers Series 2008/04, Laboratory of Economics and Management (LEM), Sant'Anna School of Advanced Studies, Pisa, Italy.
  16. Ralf Martin, 2010. "Productivity Spreads, Market Power Spreads and Trade," CEP Discussion Papers dp0997, Centre for Economic Performance, LSE.
  17. James Levinsohn & Amil Petrin, 2003. "Estimating Production Functions Using Inputs to Control for Unobservables," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 70(2), pages 317-341.
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