IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/
MyIDEAS: Log in (now much improved!) to save this paper

An Economic Inquiry into Ethiopian Exports: Pattern, Characteristics, Dynamics and Survival

Listed author(s):
  • Berihu Assefa

    ()

    (Ethiopian Development Research Institute)

  • Kiflu Gedefe

    ()

    (Ethiopian Development Research Institute)

Using both aggregate and firm-level Customs data, this paper examines Ethiopia’s export performance and dynamics over the period 1995/1996 – 2014/2015 from various dimensions. Specifically, we attempt to address the following issues: (i) How concentrated/diversified are Ethiopia’s exports in terms of exporters, products, and markets? Or, over the past decade or so, has Ethiopia added economically significant numbers of new products and markets to its export portfolio. (ii) To what extent do Ethiopian exporters survive beyond their first year of entry to the export market? (iii) And finally we decompose export growth/contraction into intensive and extensive margins to see what drives export change in Ethiopia. Several key patterns emerge from our analysis. First, we observe that Ethiopia’s export base remains quite limited, both in absolute terms and compared to countries with similar level of development. This is reflected in Ethiopia’s small number of exporters and export products as well as its low ratio of merchandise exports to GDP relative to its size and compared to its peers. The country not only has very few exporters, but the average exporter size is also very small. Second, the export diversification analysis reveals that despite a 15.5 percent growth in merchandize exports over the past decade, most of this growth is driven by expansion of exports of existing products in existing markets (growth at the intensive margin) rather than by diversification into new products and into new geographic markets (growth at the extensive margin). Third, the firm-level data analysis shows that the Ethiopian export market shows a high degree of exporter and export product churning but exporter exit and product death are also high. As a result the annual average net exporter entry is found to be about 2.5 percent. Likewise, survival beyond the first export year continues to be a challenge to new entrants. And finally, entry costs and relative size of entrants are found to be key determinants of entry, exit and survival rates.

If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.

File URL: http://www.edri.org.et/Resources/Working_Papers/EDRI_WP014__An_Economic_Inquiry_Into_Ethiopian_Exports.pdf
Download Restriction: no

Paper provided by Ethiopian Development Research Institute in its series Working Papers with number 014.

as
in new window

Length: 49 pages
Date of creation: May 2016
Handle: RePEc:etd:wpaper:014
Contact details of provider: Web page: http://www.edri.org.et

References listed on IDEAS
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:

as
in new window


  1. Romain Wacziarg & Karen Horn Welch, 2008. "Trade Liberalization and Growth: New Evidence," World Bank Economic Review, World Bank Group, vol. 22(2), pages 187-231, June.
  2. Atish R. Ghosh & Jonathan D. Ostry, 1994. "Export Instability and the External Balance in Developing Countries," IMF Staff Papers, Palgrave Macmillan, vol. 41(2), pages 214-235, June.
  3. Jean-Claude Berthelémy & Sophie Chauvin, 2000. "Structural Changes in Asia and Growth Prospects After the Crisis," Working Papers 2000-09, CEPII research center.
  4. Dollar, David & Kraay, Aart, 2003. "Institutions, trade, and growth : revisiting the evidence," Policy Research Working Paper Series 3004, The World Bank.
  5. David H. Romer & Jeffrey A. Frankel, 1999. "Does Trade Cause Growth?," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 89(3), pages 379-399, June.
  6. Hausmann, Ricardo & Klinger, Bailey, 2006. "Structural Transformation and Patterns of Comparative Advantage in the Product Space," Working Paper Series rwp06-041, Harvard University, John F. Kennedy School of Government.
  7. Irwin, Douglas A. & Tervio, Marko, 2002. "Does trade raise income?: Evidence from the twentieth century," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 58(1), pages 1-18, October.
  8. Jose Guilherme Reis & Thomas Farole, 2012. "Trade Competitiveness Diagnostic Toolkit," World Bank Publications, The World Bank, number 2248, April.
  9. Krueger, Anne O, 1998. "Why Trade Liberalisation Is Good for Growth," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 108(450), pages 1513-1522, September.
  10. Roberts, Mark J & Tybout, James R, 1997. "The Decision to Export in Colombia: An Empirical Model of Entry with Sunk Costs," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 87(4), pages 545-564, September.
  11. Dollar, David & Kraay, Aart, 2003. "Institutions, trade, and growth," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 50(1), pages 133-162, January.
Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

This item is not listed on Wikipedia, on a reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.

When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:etd:wpaper:014. 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: (Dagmawi Atnafu)

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.

If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.

If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with 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 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.

This information is provided to you by IDEAS at the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis using RePEc data.