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Performance of Exporters: Scale Effects or Continuous Productivity Improvements

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  • Crt Kostevc

Abstract

Following along the lines of a growing literature on the causal link between exporting and productivity this paper analyzes the existence of 'learning-by-exporting'in Slovenian manufacturing between 1994 and 2002. This paper asks whether in addition to good firms self-selecting into exports and multinational production exporting (multinational production) further improves their performance compared with non-exporters. I develop a simple model of trade and international production with heterogeneous firms that generates learning effects through competition in the export markets. The estimations performed on the Slovenian sample indicate that more productive firms tend to self-select into more competitive markets, while there is no conclusive evidence of learning-by-exporting. Namely, although new exporters experienced a surge in productivity in the initial year of exports the effect dissipates in the following years. This leads me to conclude that the perceived learning effects are in fact only a consequence of more efficient utilization of available production capacity brought forth by the opening of an additional market.

Suggested Citation

  • Crt Kostevc, 2005. "Performance of Exporters: Scale Effects or Continuous Productivity Improvements," LICOS Discussion Papers 15905, LICOS - Centre for Institutions and Economic Performance, KU Leuven.
  • Handle: RePEc:lic:licosd:15905
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    File URL: http://www.econ.kuleuven.be/licos/publications/dp/dp159.pdf
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. 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.
    2. Marc J. Melitz, 2003. "The Impact of Trade on Intra-Industry Reallocations and Aggregate Industry Productivity," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 71(6), pages 1695-1725, November.
    3. Nickell, Stephen J, 1996. "Competition and Corporate Performance," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 104(4), pages 724-746, August.
    4. Sofronis K. Clerides & Saul Lach & James R. Tybout, 1998. "Is Learning by Exporting Important? Micro-Dynamic Evidence from Colombia, Mexico, and Morocco," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 113(3), pages 903-947.
    5. Andrew B. Bernard & J. Bradford Jensen, 1999. "Exporting and Productivity," NBER Working Papers 7135, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    6. Yang, Xiaokai & Heijdra, Ben J, 1993. "Monopolistic Competition and Optimum Product Diversity: Comment," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 83(1), pages 295-301, March.
    7. Dixit, Avinash K & Stiglitz, Joseph E, 1977. "Monopolistic Competition and Optimum Product Diversity," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 67(3), pages 297-308, June.
    8. Richard Blundell & Stephen Bond, 2000. "GMM Estimation with persistent panel data: an application to production functions," Econometric Reviews, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 19(3), pages 321-340.
    9. Van Biesebroeck, Johannes, 2005. "Exporting raises productivity in sub-Saharan African manufacturing firms," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 67(2), pages 373-391, December.
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    Cited by:

    1. Joze P. Damijan & Crt Kostevc, 2005. "Performance on Exports: Continuous Productivity Improvements or Capacity Utilization," LICOS Discussion Papers 16305, LICOS - Centre for Institutions and Economic Performance, KU Leuven.
    2. Jože P. Damijan & Sašo Polanec & Janez Prašnikar, 2007. "Outward FDI and Productivity: Micro-evidence from Slovenia," The World Economy, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 30(1), pages 135-155, January.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Firm heterogeneity; exports; multinational firm; learning-by-exporting; difference-in-differences; martching;

    JEL classification:

    • D24 - Microeconomics - - Production and Organizations - - - Production; Cost; Capital; Capital, Total Factor, and Multifactor Productivity; Capacity
    • F12 - International Economics - - Trade - - - Models of Trade with Imperfect Competition and Scale Economies; Fragmentation
    • F14 - International Economics - - Trade - - - Empirical Studies of Trade

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