Do African Manufacturing Firms Learn from Exporting?
In this paper, we use firm-level panel data for the manufacturing sector in four African countries to estimate the effect of exporting on efficiency. Estimating simultaneously a production function and an export regression that control for unobserved firm effects, we find both significant efficiency gains from exporting, supporting the learning-byexporting hypothesis, and evidence for self-selection of more efficient firms into exporting. The evidence of learning-by-exporting suggests that Africa has much to gain from orientating its manufacturing sector towards exporting.
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