IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/p/wbk/wbrwps/4894.html
   My bibliography  Save this paper

Does tougher import competition foster product quality upgrading ?

Author

Listed:
  • Fernandes, Ana M.
  • Paunov, Caroline

Abstract

Over the past two decades, globalization, and more specifically the increased exposure to competition from low-price producers in China and India, has created a new economic environment for other emerging economies. The most advantageous way for manufacturing firms in those economies to position themselves in domestic and international markets is to offer upgraded and differentiated rather than"mundane"labor-intensive products. This paper investigates whether increased competitive pressure from imports forces firms to improve the quality of their products. The econometric analysis relies on a rich dataset of Chilean manufacturing plants and their products. Product quality is measured with unit values (average prices) and industry-level transport costs are used as an exogenous measure of import competition. The authors find a positive and robust effect of import competition on product quality. This effect is found to be particularly strong for non-exporting plants. The results also show that increased import competition from less advanced economies is the major cause for the positive impact on quality upgrading. The overall evidence points to the benefits of trade openness for product innovation but demonstrates at the same time that competitive pressure alone will not enable local plants to catch up with leading world producers.

Suggested Citation

  • Fernandes, Ana M. & Paunov, Caroline, 2009. "Does tougher import competition foster product quality upgrading ?," Policy Research Working Paper Series 4894, The World Bank.
  • Handle: RePEc:wbk:wbrwps:4894
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: http://www-wds.worldbank.org/external/default/WDSContentServer/WDSP/IB/2009/04/06/000158349_20090406114122/Rendered/PDF/WPS4894.pdf
    Download Restriction: no
    ---><---

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. James R. Tybout, 2000. "Manufacturing Firms in Developing Countries: How Well Do They Do, and Why?," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 38(1), pages 11-44, March.
    2. José Miguel Benavente & Gustavo Crespi & Alessandro Maffioli, 2007. "Public Support to Firm-Level Innovation: An Evaluation of the FONTEC Program," OVE Working Papers 0507, Inter-American Development Bank, Office of Evaluation and Oversight (OVE).
    3. Philippe Aghion & Nick Bloom & Richard Blundell & Rachel Griffith & Peter Howitt, 2005. "Competition and Innovation: an Inverted-U Relationship," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 120(2), pages 701-728.
    4. Fluet, Claude & Garella, Paolo G., 2002. "Advertising and prices as signals of quality in a regime of price rivalry," International Journal of Industrial Organization, Elsevier, vol. 20(7), pages 907-930, September.
    5. James E. Anderson & Eric van Wincoop, 2004. "Trade Costs," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 42(3), pages 691-751, September.
    6. Andrew B. Bernard & Stephen J. Redding & Peter K. Schott, 2009. "Products and Productivity," Scandinavian Journal of Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 111(4), pages 681-709, December.
    7. repec:clu:wpaper:0708-12 is not listed on IDEAS
    8. Yuriy Gorodnichenko & Jan Svejnar & Katherine Terrell, 2010. "Globalization and Innovation in Emerging Markets," American Economic Journal: Macroeconomics, American Economic Association, vol. 2(2), pages 194-226, April.
    9. Mesquita Moreira, Mauricio, 2007. "Fear of China: Is There a Future for Manufacturing in Latin America?," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 35(3), pages 355-376, March.
    10. Pinelopi K Goldberg & Amit K Khandelwal & Nina Pavcnik & Petia Topalova, 2010. "Multiproduct Firms and Product Turnover in the Developing World: Evidence from India," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 92(4), pages 1042-1049, November.
    11. John Baldwin & Wulong Gu, 2009. "The Impact of Trade on Plant Scale, Production-Run Length and Diversification," NBER Chapters, in: Producer Dynamics: New Evidence from Micro Data, pages 557-592, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    12. Marc J. Melitz & Giancarlo I. P. Ottaviano, 2021. "Market Size, Trade, and Productivity," World Scientific Book Chapters, in: Firms and Workers in a Globalized World Larger Markets, Tougher Competition, chapter 4, pages 87-108, World Scientific Publishing Co. Pte. Ltd..
    13. Mario Cimoli & Nelson Correa, 2002. "Trade Openess and Technological Gaps in Latin America: a Low Growth Trap," LEM Papers Series 2002/14, Laboratory of Economics and Management (LEM), Sant'Anna School of Advanced Studies, Pisa, Italy.
    14. Levinsohn, James, 1993. "Testing the imports-as-market-discipline hypothesis," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 35(1-2), pages 1-22, August.
    15. Thomas, Louis & Shane, Scott & Weigelt, Keith, 1998. "An empirical examination of advertising as a signal of product quality," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 37(4), pages 415-430, December.
    16. Bertschek, Irene, 1995. "Product and Process Innovation as a Response to Increasing Import and Foreign Direct Investment," Journal of Industrial Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 43(4), pages 341-357, December.
    17. Philippe Aghion & Richard Blundell & Rachel Griffith & Peter Howitt & Susanne Prantl, 2009. "The Effects of Entry on Incumbent Innovation and Productivity," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 91(1), pages 20-32, February.
    18. Lionel Fontagné & Michaël Freudenberg, 1997. "Intra-Industry Trade: Methodological Issues Reconsidered," Working Papers 1997-01, CEPII research center.
    19. Carsten Eckel & J. Peter Neary, 2010. "Multi-Product Firms and Flexible Manufacturing in the Global Economy," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 77(1), pages 188-217.
    20. Maurice Kugler & Eric Verhoogen, 2012. "Prices, Plant Size, and Product Quality," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 79(1), pages 307-339.
    21. Hummels, David & Lugovskyy, Volodymyr & Skiba, Alexandre, 2009. "The trade reducing effects of market power in international shipping," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 89(1), pages 84-97, May.
    22. Andrew B. Bernard & Stephen J. Redding & Peter K. Schott, 2006. "Multi-Product Firms and Product Switching," NBER Working Papers 12293, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    23. Hall, Robert E, 1988. "The Relation between Price and Marginal Cost in U.S. Industry," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 96(5), pages 921-947, October.
    24. Jozef Konings & Patrick Van Cayseele & Frederic Warzynski, 2005. "The Effects of Privatization and Competitive Pressure on Firms' Price-Cost Margins: Micro Evidence from Emerging Economies," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 87(1), pages 124-134, February.
    25. Andrew B. Bernard & Stephen J. Redding & Peter K. Schott, 2011. "Multiproduct Firms and Trade Liberalization," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 126(3), pages 1271-1318.
    26. Goh, Ai-Ting, 2000. "Opportunity cost, trade policies and the efficiency of firms," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 62(2), pages 363-383, August.
    27. Cohen, Wesley M & Klepper, Steven, 1996. "Firm Size and the Nature of Innovation within Industries: The Case of Process and Product R&D," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 78(2), pages 232-243, May.
    28. Huggett, Mark & Ospina, Sandra, 2001. "Does productivity growth fall after the adoption of new technology?," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 48(1), pages 173-195, August.
    29. Rauch, James E., 1999. "Networks versus markets in international trade," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 48(1), pages 7-35, June.
    30. Roeger, Werner, 1995. "Can Imperfect Competition Explain the Difference between Primal and Dual Productivity Measures? Estimates for U.S. Manufacturing," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 103(2), pages 316-330, April.
    31. Mathias Thoenig & Thierry Verdier, 2003. "A Theory of Defensive Skill-Biased Innovation and Globalization," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 93(3), pages 709-728, June.
    32. Parente, Stephen L & Prescott, Edward C, 1994. "Barriers to Technology Adoption and Development," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 102(2), pages 298-321, April.
    33. Roberto Alvarez & Raymond Robertson, 2004. "Exposure to foreign markets and plant-level innovation: evidence from Chile and Mexico," The Journal of International Trade & Economic Development, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 13(1), pages 57-87.
    34. Fernandes, Ana M. & Paunov, Caroline, 2008. "Foreign direct investment in services and manufacturing productivity growth: evidence for Chile," Policy Research Working Paper Series 4730, The World Bank.
    35. Lucas Navarro, 2012. "Plant level evidence on product mix changes in Chilean manufacturing," The Journal of International Trade & Economic Development, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 21(2), pages 165-195, February.
    36. Sanghoon Ahn, 2002. "Competition, Innovation and Productivity Growth: A Review of Theory and Evidence," OECD Economics Department Working Papers 317, OECD Publishing.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    Citations

    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.
    as


    Cited by:

    1. World Bank, . "Republic of Turkey Reform for Competitiveness Technical Assistance : Fostering Open and Efficient Markets through Effective Competition Policies," World Bank Other Operational Studies, The World Bank, number 17010, September.
    2. Paulo Bastos & Odd Rune Straume, 2012. "Globalization, product differentiation, and wage inequality," Canadian Journal of Economics/Revue canadienne d'économique, John Wiley & Sons, vol. 45(3), pages 857-878, August.
    3. Aldaba, Rafaelita M., 2012. "Trade Reforms, Competition, and Innovation in the Philippines," Discussion Papers DP 2012-06, Philippine Institute for Development Studies.
    4. Iacovone, Leonardo & Rauch, Ferdinand & Winters, L. Alan, 2013. "Trade as an engine of creative destruction: Mexican experience with Chinese competition," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 89(2), pages 379-392.
    5. Iraj Hashi & Nebojša Stojčić, 2013. "Knowledge Spillovers, Innovation Activities, And Competitiveness Of Industries In Eu Member And Candidate Countries," Economic Annals, Faculty of Economics, University of Belgrade, vol. 58(198), pages 7-34, July - Se.
    6. Bas, Maria & Strauss-Kahn, Vanessa, 2015. "Input-trade liberalization, export prices and quality upgrading," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 95(2), pages 250-262.
    7. Murphy, Gavin & Siedschlag, Iulia, 2012. "The Effect of Real Exchange Rate Changes on Labour Productivity Growth," Papers WP439, Economic and Social Research Institute (ESRI).
    8. Ana M. Fernandes & Caroline Paunov, 2015. "The Risks of Innovation: Are Innovating Firms Less Likely to Die?," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 97(3), pages 638-653, July.
    9. Nebojsa Stojcic & Marija Becic & Perica Vojinic, 2012. "The Competitiveness of Exports from Manufacturing Industries in Croatia and Slovenia to the EU-15 Market: A Dynamic Panel Analysis," Croatian Economic Survey, The Institute of Economics, Zagreb, vol. 14(1), pages 69-105, April.
    10. Narjoko, Dionisius & Urata, Shujiro, 2019. "Firm Adjustment to Trade Policy Changes in East Asia," ADBI Working Papers 945, Asian Development Bank Institute.
    11. Jianhong Zhang & Chaohong Zhou & Arjen van Witteloostuijn & Haico Ebbers, 2013. "What does the Chinese market need? An empirical study of the determinants of Chinese imports, 1996--2008," Asia Pacific Business Review, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 19(3), pages 402-420, July.
    12. Daniel Lederman & William F. Maloney, 2012. "Does What You Export Matter? In Search of Empirical Guidance for Industrial Policies," World Bank Publications, The World Bank, number 9371, July.
    13. Jennie Bai & Jia Guo & Benjamin R. Mandel, 2013. "Going global: markups and product quality in the Chinese art market," Staff Reports 614, Federal Reserve Bank of New York.
    14. Vidanes, Mary Joyce N., 2017. "Impact of Trade Liberalization on Research and Development (R&D) Expenditures in the Philippines," Journal of Economics, Management & Agricultural Development, Journal of Economics, Management & Agricultural Development (JEMAD), vol. 3(1), June.

    Most related items

    These are the items that most often cite the same works as this one and are cited by the same works as this one.
    1. Ana M. Fernandes & Caroline Paunov, 2013. "Does trade stimulate product quality upgrading?," Canadian Journal of Economics, Canadian Economics Association, vol. 46(4), pages 1232-1264, November.
    2. Iacovone, Leonardo & Rauch, Ferdinand & Winters, L. Alan, 2013. "Trade as an engine of creative destruction: Mexican experience with Chinese competition," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 89(2), pages 379-392.
    3. Melitz, Marc J. & Redding, Stephen J., 2014. "Heterogeneous Firms and Trade," Handbook of International Economics, in: Gopinath, G. & Helpman, . & Rogoff, K. (ed.), Handbook of International Economics, edition 1, volume 4, chapter 0, pages 1-54, Elsevier.
    4. Pinelopi K Goldberg & Amit K Khandelwal & Nina Pavcnik & Petia Topalova, 2010. "Multiproduct Firms and Product Turnover in the Developing World: Evidence from India," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 92(4), pages 1042-1049, November.
    5. Pinelopi Koujianou Goldberg & Amit Kumar Khandelwal & Nina Pavcnik & Petia Topalova, 2010. "Imported Intermediate Inputs and Domestic Product Growth: Evidence from India," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 125(4), pages 1727-1767.
    6. Frederic Warzynski & Jan De Loecker, 2010. "Markups and Firm-level Exports," 2010 Meeting Papers 438, Society for Economic Dynamics.
    7. Jan De Loecker & Pinelopi K. Goldberg & Amit K. Khandelwal & Nina Pavcnik, 2016. "Prices, Markups, and Trade Reform," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 84, pages 445-510, March.
    8. Carlo Altomonte & Alessandro Barattieri, 2015. "Endogenous Markups, International Trade, and the Product Mix," Journal of Industry, Competition and Trade, Springer, vol. 15(3), pages 205-221, September.
    9. Cassiman, Bruno & Vanormelingen, Stijn, 2013. "Profiting from Innovation: Firm Level Evidence on Markups," CEPR Discussion Papers 9703, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    10. Kalina Manova & Zhiwei Zhang, 2008. "China's exporters and importers: firms, products, and trade partners," Working Paper Series 2008-28, Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco.
    11. Maria Bas & Caroline Paunov, 2019. "What gains and distributional implications result from trade liberalization," Documents de travail du Centre d'Economie de la Sorbonne 19003, Université Panthéon-Sorbonne (Paris 1), Centre d'Economie de la Sorbonne.
    12. Eckel, Carsten & Iacovone, Leonardo & Javorcik, Beata & Neary, J. Peter, 2015. "Multi-product firms at home and away: Cost- versus quality-based competence," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 95(2), pages 216-232.
    13. Hongkui Liu & Ming Xu & Tenglong Zhong, 2019. "Import Competition and Export Markups: Evidence from Chinese Multi-Product Exporters," Annals of Economics and Finance, Society for AEF, vol. 20(1), pages 357-385, May.
    14. Andrew B. Bernard & Stephen J. Redding & Peter K. Schott, 2011. "Multiproduct Firms and Trade Liberalization," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 126(3), pages 1271-1318.
    15. Andrew B. Bernard & J. Bradford Jensen & Stephen J. Redding & Peter K. Schott, 2012. "The Empirics of Firm Heterogeneity and International Trade," Annual Review of Economics, Annual Reviews, vol. 4(1), pages 283-313, July.
    16. Jan De Loecker & Frederic Warzynski, 2012. "Markups and Firm-Level Export Status," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 102(6), pages 2437-2471, October.
    17. Coşar, A. Kerem & Demir, Banu, 2018. "Shipping inside the box: Containerization and trade," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 114(C), pages 331-345.
    18. Richard Fabling & Arthur Grimes & Lynda Sanderson, 2012. "Whatever next? Export market choices of New Zealand firms," Papers in Regional Science, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 91(1), pages 137-159, March.
    19. Rachel Griffith & Rupert Harrison & Helen Simpson, 2010. "Product Market Reform and Innovation in the EU," Scandinavian Journal of Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 112(2), pages 389-415, June.
    20. Mary Amiti & Amit K. Khandelwal, 2013. "Import Competition and Quality Upgrading," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 95(2), pages 476-490, May.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Transport Economics Policy&Planning; Markets and Market Access; Economic Theory&Research; Water and Industry; Access to Markets;
    All these keywords.

    NEP fields

    This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    Corrections

    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:wbk:wbrwps:4894. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: . General contact details of provider: https://edirc.repec.org/data/dvewbus.html .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If CitEc recognized a bibliographic reference but did not link an item in RePEc to it, you can help with this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: Roula I. Yazigi (email available below). General contact details of provider: https://edirc.repec.org/data/dvewbus.html .

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.