IDEAS home Printed from
   My bibliography  Save this paper

Can Offshoring Reduce Unemployment?


  • Devashish Mitra

    () (Syracuse University)

  • Priya Ranjan

    () (University of California - Irvine)


In this paper, in order to study the impact of offshoring on sectoral and economy wide rates of unemployment, we construct a two-sector, general-equilibrium model in which labor is mobile across the two sectors, and unemployment is caused by search frictions. We find that, contrary to general perception, wage increases and sectoral unemployment decreases due to offshoring. This result can be understood to arise from the productivity enhancing (cost reducing) effect of offshoring. If the search cost is identical in the two sectors, or is higher in the sector which experiences o¤shoring, the economy wide rate of unemployment decreases. When we modify the model to disallow intersectoral labor mobility, the negative relative price e¤ect on the offshoring sector may offset the positive productivity effect, and result in a rise in unemployment in that sector. In the other sector, offshoring has a much stronger unemployment reducing effect in this case.

Suggested Citation

  • Devashish Mitra & Priya Ranjan, 2008. "Can Offshoring Reduce Unemployment?," Development Working Papers 257, Centro Studi Luca d'Agliano, University of Milano.
  • Handle: RePEc:csl:devewp:257

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL:
    Download Restriction: no

    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Bernard, Andrew B. & Bradford Jensen, J., 1999. "Exceptional exporter performance: cause, effect, or both?," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 47(1), pages 1-25, February.
    2. Nina Pavcnik, 2002. "Trade Liberalization, Exit, and Productivity Improvements: Evidence from Chilean Plants," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 69(1), pages 245-276.
    3. Andrew B. Bernard & J. Bradford Jensen, 2004. "Why Some Firms Export," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 86(2), pages 561-569, May.
    4. Redding, Stephen & Venables, Anthony J., 2003. "South-East Asian export performance: external market access and internal supply capacity," Journal of the Japanese and International Economies, Elsevier, vol. 17(4), pages 404-431, December.
    5. Joachim Wagner, 2007. "Exports and Productivity: A Survey of the Evidence from Firm-level Data," The World Economy, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 30(1), pages 60-82, January.
    6. Olley, G Steven & Pakes, Ariel, 1996. "The Dynamics of Productivity in the Telecommunications Equipment Industry," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 64(6), pages 1263-1297, November.
    7. Elhanan Helpman & Marc Melitz & Yona Rubinstein, 2008. "Estimating Trade Flows: Trading Partners and Trading Volumes," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 123(2), pages 441-487.
    8. David Greenaway & Richard Kneller, 2007. "Firm heterogeneity, exporting and foreign direct investment," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 117(517), pages 134-161, February.
    9. 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.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)


    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.

    Cited by:

    1. Bruno Decreuse & Paul Maarek, 2015. "FDI and the Labor Share in Developing Countries : A Theory and Some Evidence," Annals of Economics and Statistics, GENES, issue 119-120, pages 289-319.

    More about this item


    Access and download statistics


    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:csl:devewp:257. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Chiara Elli). General contact details of provider: .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    We have no references for this item. You can help adding them by using this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.