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Importing, Exporting and the Productivity of Services Firms in Sub-Saharan Africa

  • Neil Foster-McGregor

    ()

    (The Vienna Institute for International Economic Studies, wiiw)

  • Anders Isaksson
  • Florian Kaulich

Abstract In this paper we examine productivity differences between trading and non-trading firms in the services sector using recently collected data on a sample of 19 sub-Saharan African firms. A variety of parametric and non-parametric tests are implemented in order to examine whether exporters, importers and two-way traders perform better than non-traders, and whether there are differences in performance between different types of trading firms. Our results indicate that services firms that are engaged in international trade perform significantly better than those firms that trade on the domestic market only. Two-way traders and exporters only are found to perform better than importers only, with no significant difference in performance found between two-way traders and exporters only. We further present evidence indicating that there is no significant difference in performance between export starters and export continuers, a result consistent with the self-selection hypothesis for African services firms.

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Paper provided by The Vienna Institute for International Economic Studies, wiiw in its series wiiw Working Papers with number 98.

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Length: 26 pages including 12 Tables
Date of creation: Mar 2013
Date of revision:
Publication status: Published as wiiw Working Paper
Handle: RePEc:wii:wpaper:98
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  1. Arne Bigsten & Paul Collier & Stefan Dercon & Marcel Fachamps & Bernard Gauthier & Jan Willem Gunning & Abena Oduro & Remco Oostendorp & Catherine Pattillo & Mans Soderbom & Francis Teal & Albert Zeuf, 2004. "Do African manufacturing firms learn from exporting?," Development and Comp Systems 0409071, EconWPA.
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  7. Harris, Richard D, 2002. "Foreign Ownership and Productivity in the United Kingdom--Some Issues When Using the ARD Establishment Level Data," Scottish Journal of Political Economy, Scottish Economic Society, vol. 49(3), pages 318-35, August.
  8. Neil Foster-McGregor & Anders Isaksson & Florian Kaulich, 2013. "Importing, Exporting and Performance in Sub-Saharan African Manufacturing Firms," wiiw Working Papers 96, The Vienna Institute for International Economic Studies, wiiw.
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  15. Richard Harris & Catherine Robinson, 2003. "Foreign Ownership and Productivity in the United Kingdom Estimates for U.K. Manufacturing Using the ARD," Review of Industrial Organization, Springer, vol. 22(3), pages 207-223, May.
  16. Davide Castellani & Francesco Serti & Chiara Tomasi, 2008. "Firms in International Trade: Importers and Exporters Heterogeneity in the Italian Manufacturing Industry," LEM Papers Series 2008/04, Laboratory of Economics and Management (LEM), Sant'Anna School of Advanced Studies, Pisa, Italy.
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