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Why Some Firms Export? An Empirical Analysis for Manufacturing Firms in the MENA Region

  • Fakih, Ali

    ()

    (Lebanese American University)

  • Ghazalian, Pascal L.

    ()

    (University of Lethbridge)

This paper analyzes the exporting behaviour of manufacturing firms located in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region using data from the World Bank's Enterprise Surveys Database. It specifically examines the factors that determine the probability of exporting and the export intensity of these firms. The empirical specification is represented through a country-specific effect model and through a model with country variables. The empirical results reveal significant positive effects of private foreign ownership, information and communication technology, and firm size on the probability of exporting and on export intensity of MENA manufacturing firms. Government ownership and the relative labour compositions of firms in terms of skilled production workers and in terms of non-production workers tend to exert negative effects on firms' propensity to export. The empirical results from the model with country variables underscore the enhancing effects of national economic development factors on the probability of exporting and on export intensity. Also, they indicate that the propensity to export of these firms decreases with larger domestic market size. The empirical analysis reveals considerable variations in the effects of the determining factors when carrying out the estimation for individual countries.

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Paper provided by Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA) in its series IZA Discussion Papers with number 7172.

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Length: 31 pages
Date of creation: Jan 2013
Date of revision:
Publication status: published as 'Which Firms Export? An Empirical Analysis for the Manufacturing Sector in the MENA Region' in: Journal of Economic Studies, 2014, 41 (5), 672-695
Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp7172
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  1. Blanes-Cristóbal, José Vicente & Dovis, Marion & Milgram-Baleix, Juliette & Moro-Egido, Ana I., 2008. "Do sunk exporting costs differ among markets? Evidence from Spanish manufacturing firms," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 101(2), pages 110-112, November.
  2. 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.
  3. Andrew Bernard & Joachim Wagner, 2001. "Export entry and exit by German firms," Review of World Economics (Weltwirtschaftliches Archiv), Springer, vol. 137(1), pages 105-123, March.
  4. Keith Head & John Ries, 2003. "Heterogeneity and the FDI versus Export Decision of Japanese Manufacturers," NBER Working Papers 10052, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  5. Gianmarco Ottaviano & Christian Volpe Martincus, 2011. "SMEs in Argentina: who are the exporters?," Small Business Economics, Springer, vol. 37(3), pages 341-361, October.
  6. Andrew B. Bernard & J. Bradford Jensen, 1997. "Exceptional Exporter Performance: Cause, Effect, or Both?," NBER Working Papers 6272, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  7. Aitken, Brian & Hanson, Gordon H. & Harrison, Ann E., 1997. "Spillovers, foreign investment, and export behavior," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 43(1-2), pages 103-132, August.
  8. Mahmut Yasar & Carl H. Nelson & Roderick Rejesus, 2006. "Productivity and Exporting Status of Manufacturing Firms: Evidence from Quantile Regressions," Review of World Economics (Weltwirtschaftliches Archiv), Springer, vol. 142(4), pages 675-694, December.
  9. Johannes Van Biesebroeck, 2003. "Exporting Raises Productivity in Sub-Saharan African Manufacturing Plants," NBER Working Papers 10020, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  10. Roberto Alvarez & Ricardo López, 2005. "Exporting and performance: evidence from Chilean plants," Canadian Journal of Economics, Canadian Economics Association, vol. 38(4), pages 1384-1400, November.
  11. Sofronis Clerides & Saul Lach & James Tybout, 1996. "Is "learning-by-exporting" important? Micro-dynamic evidence from Colombia, Mexico and Morocco," Finance and Economics Discussion Series 96-30, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
  12. Minetti, Raoul & Zhu, Susan Chun, 2011. "Credit constraints and firm export: Microeconomic evidence from Italy," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 83(2), pages 109-125, March.
  13. Richard Kneller & Mauro Pisu & Zhihong Yu, 2008. "Overseas business costs and firm export performance," Canadian Journal of Economics, Canadian Economics Association, vol. 41(2), pages 639-669, May.
  14. Greenaway, David & Guariglia, Alessandra & Kneller, Richard, 2007. "Financial factors and exporting decisions," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 73(2), pages 377-395, November.
  15. Chandan Sharma & Ritesh Kumar Mishra, 2011. "Does export and productivity growth linkage exist? Evidence from the Indian manufacturing industry," International Review of Applied Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 25(6), pages 633-652, November.
  16. Papke, Leslie E & Wooldridge, Jeffrey M, 1996. "Econometric Methods for Fractional Response Variables with an Application to 401(K) Plan Participation Rates," Journal of Applied Econometrics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 11(6), pages 619-32, Nov.-Dec..
  17. Davide Castellani, 2002. "Export behavior and productivity growth: Evidence from Italian manufacturing firms," Review of World Economics (Weltwirtschaftliches Archiv), Springer, vol. 138(4), pages 605-628, December.
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