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The Effects of Trade Liberalization on Productivity and Welfare: The Role of Firm Heterogeneity, R&D and Market Structure

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  • Stähler, Frank
  • Raff, Horst
  • Long, Ngo Van

Abstract

This paper develops an oligopolistic model of international trade with heterogeneous firms and endogenous R&D to examine how trade liberalization affects firm and industry productivity, as well as social welfare. We identify four effects of trade liberalization on productivity: (i) a direct effect through changes in R&D investment; (ii) a scale effect due to changes in firm size; (iii) a selection effect due to inefficient firms leaving the market; and (iv) a market-share reallocation effect as efficient firms expand and inefficient firms reduce their output. We show how these effects operate in the short run when market structure is fixed, and in the long run when market structure is endogenous. Among the robust results that hold for any market structure are that trade liberalization (i) increases (decreases) aggregate R&D for low (high) trade costs; (ii) increases expected firm size if trade costs are high; and (iii) raises expected social welfare if trade costs are low.

Suggested Citation

  • Stähler, Frank & Raff, Horst & Long, Ngo Van, 2007. "The Effects of Trade Liberalization on Productivity and Welfare: The Role of Firm Heterogeneity, R&D and Market Structure," Economics Working Papers 2007-20, Christian-Albrechts-University of Kiel, Department of Economics.
  • Handle: RePEc:zbw:cauewp:5686
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    Cited by:

    1. Itai Agur, 2010. "Trade Liberalization, Firm Selection, and Variety Growth," Review of International Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 18(3), pages 582-594, August.
    2. Nicolas Coeurdacier & Roberto A. de Santis & Antonin Aviat, 2009. "Cross-border mergers and acquisitions and European integration," Sciences Po publications info:hdl:2441/c8dmi8nm4pd, Sciences Po.
    3. Antonio Navas-Ruiz & Davide Sala, 2007. "Technology Adoption and the Selection Effect of Trade," Economics Working Papers ECO2007/58, European University Institute.
    4. Michele Imbruno, 2008. "EXPORTING, PRODUCTIVITY AND MARKET INTEGRATON: Italian manufacturing firms within the European context," Quaderni DSEMS 22-2008, Dipartimento di Scienze Economiche, Matematiche e Statistiche, Universita' di Foggia.
    5. Anderson, Kym & Lattimore, Ralph G. & Lloyd, Peter J. & MacLaren, Donald, 2007. "Distortions to Agricultural Incentives in Australia and New Zealand," 2007 Conference (51st), February 13-16, 2007, Queenstown, New Zealand 10407, Australian Agricultural and Resource Economics Society.
    6. Crespo, Aranzazu, 2012. "Trade, Innovation and Productivity: A Quantitative Analysis of Europe," MPRA Paper 57162, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    7. Jaroslava Hečková & Alexandra Chapčáková & Eva Litavcová, 2016. "Ekonomická integrácia a jej vplyv na cezhraničné fúzie a akvizície v európskom priestore [Economic Integration and Its Influence on Cross-Border Mergers and Acquisitions within the European Area]," Politická ekonomie, Prague University of Economics and Business, vol. 2016(1), pages 19-33.
    8. Ram Upendra Das, 2014. "Trade and Investment Liberalization in India: Implications for Productivity Gains," Journal of International Commerce, Economics and Policy (JICEP), World Scientific Publishing Co. Pte. Ltd., vol. 5(03), pages 1-21.

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    international trade; firm heterogeneity; R&D; productivity; market structure;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • F12 - International Economics - - Trade - - - Models of Trade with Imperfect Competition and Scale Economies; Fragmentation
    • F15 - International Economics - - Trade - - - Economic Integration

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