Export Industry Policy and Reputational Comparative Advantage
Country-of-origin reputations are endogenized in this paper and it is shown that otherwise identical countries can be correctly perceived as differing in their percentage of high-quality producers. These self-fulfilling reputations determine not only the average quality of a country’s exports but also the type of products in which a country specializes. Hence, the pattern of international trade can be determined by this “reputational comparative advantage.” An inferior country-of-origin reputation leads to lower national welfare, therefore, several trade and industrial policies that can improve country-of-origin reputation are examined.
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