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International Trade Patterns over the Last Four Decades: How does Portugal Compare with other Cohesion Countries?

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  • Amador, João
  • Cabral, Sónia
  • Ramos Maria, José

Abstract

This paper compares the international trade pattern of Portugal with the other three EU15 Cohesion countries - Spain, Greece and Ireland - over the last forty years. The paper adopts a fact-finding approach, investigating the degree of openness of these economies and making extensive use of the standard Balassa (1965) index to assess the technological content of these countries' manufacturing trade. In order to infer on international trade specialization and on the persistence of trade patterns, the paper provides empirical evidence on the shape of the cross-sector distribution of 120 manufacturing exports and examines the intra-distribution dynamics. The Balassa index is also computed using import data, which allows for an assessment on the similitude of relative import structures and a crude identification of major vertical specialization activities. The paper concludes that there was a significant increase in the degree of openness of all economies, particularly in Ireland. Over the last four decades, Portugal shows a tendency to reduce its overall extent of export specialization, but significant differences with the world average still remain. The same behaviour is found in Greece and, more strongly, in Spain, which is the least specialized country. Conversely, Ireland shows the strongest export specialization and there is evidence of an increase in the last twenty years. The overall degree of specialization is higher on the export than on the import side, as the four countries analyzed show an import structure very close to the world average in the 2000-04 period. In the Portuguese case, we also find evidence that the degree of persistence of export patterns is higher than that of imports, in particular over longer horizons.

Suggested Citation

  • Amador, João & Cabral, Sónia & Ramos Maria, José, 2007. "International Trade Patterns over the Last Four Decades: How does Portugal Compare with other Cohesion Countries?," MPRA Paper 5996, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  • Handle: RePEc:pra:mprapa:5996
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    Cited by:

    1. Fernando Alexandre & Pedro Bação & João Cerejeira & Miguel Portela, 2010. "Manufacturing employment and exchange rates in the Portuguese economy: the role of openness, technology and labour market rigidity," GEMF Working Papers 2010-23, GEMF, Faculty of Economics, University of Coimbra.
    2. Francisco Rebelo & Ester Gomes da Silva, 2013. "Export variety, technological content and economic performance: The case of Portugal," Papers in Evolutionary Economic Geography (PEEG) 1310, Utrecht University, Department of Human Geography and Spatial Planning, Group Economic Geography, revised Jun 2013.
    3. Rui Castro & Gian Clementi, 2009. "The economic effects of improving investor rights in Portugal," Portuguese Economic Journal, Springer;Instituto Superior de Economia e Gestao, vol. 8(2), pages 59-97, August.
    4. Fernando Alexandre & Pedro Bação & João Cerejeira & Miguel Portela, 2009. "Aggregate and sector-specific exchange rate indexes for the Portuguese economy," Notas Económicas, Faculty of Economics, University of Coimbra, issue 30, pages 6-28, December.
    5. Fernando Alexandre & Pedro Bação & João Cerejeira & Miguel Portela, 2011. "Employment and Exchange Rates: The Role of Openness and Technology," Open Economies Review, Springer, vol. 22(5), pages 969-984, November.
    6. Frank Barry & Adele Bergin, 2010. "Ireland’s Inward FDI over the Recession and Beyond," The Institute for International Integration Studies Discussion Paper Series iiisdp321, IIIS.
    7. Ahasanul Haque & Naila Anwar & Zariyah Ibrahim, 2013. "Export of Furniture Product from Malaysia: Market Prospects and Challenges," Journal of Economics and Behavioral Studies, AMH International, vol. 5(7), pages 406-419.
    8. Celeste Varum & Carmen Guimarães & José Martinho Oliveira & Ana Martins, 2020. "Industrial dynamics in the context of a region’s international competitiveness," Local Economy, London South Bank University, vol. 35(3), pages 209-229, May.
    9. Miguel Lebre de Freitas & Ricardo Paes Mamede, 2008. "Structural Transformation and the role of Foreign Direct Investment in Portugal: a descriptive analysis for the period 1990-2005," GEE Papers 0009, Gabinete de Estratégia e Estudos, Ministério da Economia, revised Dec 2008.
    10. Miguel Lebre de Freitas & Ricardo Paes Mamede, 2011. "Structural transformation of Portuguese exports and the role of foreign-owned firms: A descriptive analysis for the period 1995-2005," Notas Económicas, Faculty of Economics, University of Coimbra, issue 33, pages 20-43, June.
    11. Barry, Frank & Bergin, Adele, 2012. "Offshoring, Inward Investment and Export Performance in Ireland," Papers WP430, Economic and Social Research Institute (ESRI).
    12. João Amador & Sónia Cabral, 2008. "The Portuguese Export Performance in Perspective: A Constant Market Share Analysis," Economic Bulletin and Financial Stability Report Articles and Banco de Portugal Economic Studies, Banco de Portugal, Economics and Research Department.
    13. João Amador & Luca David Opromolla, 2009. "Textiles and Clothing Exporting Sectors in Portugal - Recent Trends," Economic Bulletin and Financial Stability Report Articles and Banco de Portugal Economic Studies, Banco de Portugal, Economics and Research Department.
    14. Oelgemöller, Jens, 2012. "Analyzing the international competitiveness of the industry in Portugal, Ireland, Greece and Spain using revealed comparative advantages (RCA) indicators," CAWM Discussion Papers 61, University of Münster, Münster Center for Economic Policy (MEP).
    15. Jens Oelgemoeller, "undated". "Analyzing the international competitiveness of the industry in Portugal, Ireland, Greece and Spain using revealed comparative advantages (RCA) indicators," Working Papers 201286, Institute of Spatial and Housing Economics, Munster Universitary.
    16. Cristina Manteu & Sónia Cabral, 2013. "The price elasticity of external demand of Portuguese exports: a comparison with other euro area countries," Economic Bulletin and Financial Stability Report Articles and Banco de Portugal Economic Studies, Banco de Portugal, Economics and Research Department.
    17. Cristina Manteu & Sónia Cabral, 2011. "The price elasticity of external demand: how does Portugal compare with other euro area countries?," Working Papers w201127, Banco de Portugal, Economics and Research Department.

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    International Trade; Export Specialization; Import; Balassa Index; Distribution Dynamics;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • C14 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Econometric and Statistical Methods and Methodology: General - - - Semiparametric and Nonparametric Methods: General
    • F14 - International Economics - - Trade - - - Empirical Studies of Trade
    • O52 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economywide Country Studies - - - Europe

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