On export composition and growth
The effect of exports with different technological intensities on economic growth is estimated using a generalization of the model put forward by Feder (1983, "On Exports and Economic Growth", Journal of Development Economics 12, 59-73). The hypothesis that exports in technology-intensive industries have a higher potential for positive externalities coupled with higher productivity levels (due to higher rates of capitalisation) is tested using a comprehensive and detailed data set,covering 45 industrialised and developing countries and including exports of 33 industries over the time period 1981 to 1997. The estimation results, using a random effects model and employing an instrumental variables estimator, support the hypothesis of qualitative differences between high and low tech exports with respect to output growth. The superior performance of high tech exports stems from their positive productivity differential to the domestic sector, while the externality effect is not significant at any meaningful level of significance. The positive productivity differential is only significant for the subsample of developing countries. No significant effects were found to be present in the subsample of OECD member countries.
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