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Services versus Goods Trade: Are They the Same?


  • Andrea ARIU

    () (FNRS and UNIVERSITE CATHOLIQUE DE LOUVAIN, Institut de Recherches Economiques et Sociales (IRES))


In this paper we compare static and dynamic features of trade in goods and trade in services at the micro level. By using data from the same country, Belgium, and by making use of a common definition of transaction, we are able to enrich the existing qualitative comparisons with quantitative insights and to fill the existing gap in the literature. First, we analyze static features of trade such as participation rates, firms characteristics, heterogeneity, concentration and trade variation. Then, we explore dynamic aspects focusing on entry, exit, survival and growth strategy in foreign markets. From a static perspective, our results reveal that there are limited qualitative differences between trade in goods and trade in services and even the quantitative ones do not justify the need of different theoretical models. In the time dimension instead, some key peculiarities of services offer new insights for differentiating between the two.

Suggested Citation

  • Andrea ARIU, 2013. "Services versus Goods Trade: Are They the Same?," Discussion Papers (IRES - Institut de Recherches Economiques et Sociales) 2013015, Université catholique de Louvain, Institut de Recherches Economiques et Sociales (IRES).
  • Handle: RePEc:ctl:louvir:2013015

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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Hatzigeorgiou, Andreas & Lodefalk, Magnus, 2015. "The Role of Foreign Networks for Firm Export of Services," Working Papers 2015:6, Örebro University, School of Business.

    More about this item


    Trade in Services; Trade in Goods; Trade Dynamics;

    JEL classification:

    • F10 - International Economics - - Trade - - - General
    • F14 - International Economics - - Trade - - - Empirical Studies of Trade
    • L80 - Industrial Organization - - Industry Studies: Services - - - General

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