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

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

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.

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File URL: http://econstor.eu/bitstream/10419/22036/1/EWP-2007-20.pdf
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Paper provided by Christian-Albrechts-University of Kiel, Department of Economics in its series Economics Working Papers with number 2007,20.

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Date of creation: 2007
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Handle: RePEc:zbw:cauewp:5686
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  1. Richard Baldwin, 2005. "Heterogeneous Firms and Trade: Testable and Untestable Properties of the Melitz Model," NBER Working Papers 11471, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Nina Pavcnik, 2002. "Trade Liberalization, Exit, and Productivity Improvements: Evidence from Chilean Plants," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 69(1), pages 245-276.
  3. James Brander & Paul Krugman, 1980. "A "Reciprocal Dumping" Model of International Trade," Working Papers 405, Queen's University, Department of Economics.
  4. Andrew B. Bernard & Jonathan Eaton & J. Bradford Jenson & Samuel Kortum, 2000. "Plants and Productivity in International Trade," NBER Working Papers 7688, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  5. Bernard, A., 1997. "Exceptional Exporter Performance: Cause, Effect, or Both?," Working papers 97-21, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Department of Economics.
  6. Mark J. Melitz, 2002. "The Impact of Trade on Intra-Industry Reallocations and Aggregate Industry Productivity," NBER Working Papers 8881, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  7. Fernandes, Ana M., 2007. "Trade policy, trade volumes and plant-level productivity in Colombian manufacturing industries," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 71(1), pages 52-71, March.
  8. Wagner, Joachim, 2005. "Exports and Productivity : A survey of the evidence from firm level data," HWWA Discussion Papers 319, Hamburg Institute of International Economics (HWWA).
  9. Daniel Trefler, 2004. "The Long and Short of the Canada-U. S. Free Trade Agreement," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 94(4), pages 870-895, September.
  10. Choi, E. Kwan & Harrigan, James, 2003. "Handbook of International Trade," Staff General Research Papers 11375, Iowa State University, Department of Economics.
  11. Marc J. Melitz & Gianmarco I.P. Ottaviano, 2005. "Market Size, Trade, and Productivity," NBER Working Papers 11393, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  12. Mary Hallward-Driemeier & Giuseppe Iarossi & Kenneth L. Sokoloff, 2002. "Exports and Manufacturing Productivity in East Asia: A Comparative Analysis with Firm-Level Data," NBER Working Papers 8894, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  13. Haaland, Jan I. & Kind, Hans Jarle, 2008. "R&D policies, trade and process innovation," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 74(1), pages 170-187, January.
  14. Robert W. Staiger & Kyle Bagwell, 1990. "The Sensitivity of Strategic and Corrective R&D Policy in Oligopolistic Industries," NBER Working Papers 3236, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  15. David Cox & Richard Harris, 1983. "Trade Liberalization and Industrial Organization: Some Estimates for Canada," Working Papers 523, Queen's University, Department of Economics.
  16. Cramton, Peter C. & Palfrey, Thomas R., 1986. "Cartel Enforcement with Uncertainty About Costs," Working Papers 619, California Institute of Technology, Division of the Humanities and Social Sciences.
  17. Mark Funk, 2003. "The Effects of Trade on Research and Development," Open Economies Review, Springer, vol. 14(1), pages 29-42, January.
  18. Roberto Alvarez & Ricardo López, 2005. "Exporting and performance: evidence from Chilean plants," Canadian Journal of Economics, Canadian Economics Association, vol. 38(4), pages 1384-1400, November.
  19. Yeaple, Stephen & Helpman, Elhanan & Melitz, Marc, 2004. "Export versus FDI with Heterogeneous Firms," Scholarly Articles 3229098, Harvard University Department of Economics.
  20. Mary Amiti & Jozef Konings, 2005. "Trade Liberalization, Intermediate Inputs, and Productivity; Evidence From Indonesia," IMF Working Papers 05/146, International Monetary Fund.
  21. Miyagiwa, K. & Ohno, Y., 1993. "Closing the Technology Gap Under Protection," Discussion Papers in Economics at the University of Washington 93-09, Department of Economics at the University of Washington.
  22. Richard E. Baldwin & Rikard Forslid, 2010. "Trade Liberalization with Heterogeneous Firms," Review of Development Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 14(2), pages 161-176, 05.
  23. David Greenaway & Richard Kneller, 2007. "Firm heterogeneity, exporting and foreign direct investment," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 117(517), pages F134-F161, 02.
  24. Bee Yan Aw & Mark J. Roberts & Tor Winston, 2007. "Export Market Participation, Investments in R&D and Worker Training, and the Evolution of Firm Productivity," The World Economy, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 30(1), pages 83-104, 01.
  25. Muendler, Marc-Andreas, 2004. "Trade, Technology, and Productivity: A Study of Brazilian Manufacturers, 1986-1998," University of California at San Diego, Economics Working Paper Series qt6m96c2r7, Department of Economics, UC San Diego.
  26. Gustafsson, Peter & Segerstrom, Paul, 2006. "Trade Liberalization and Productivity Growth," CEPR Discussion Papers 5894, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  27. Josh Ederington & Phillip McCalman, 2007. "The Impact of Trade Liberalization on Productivity Within and Across Industries: Theory and Evidence," Monash Economics Working Papers 24-07, Monash University, Department of Economics.
  28. repec:rus:hseeco:122439 is not listed on IDEAS
  29. Head, Keith & Ries, John, 1999. "Rationalization effects of tariff reductions," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 47(2), pages 295-320, April.
  30. Konings, Jozef & Vandenbussche, Hylke, 2004. "Antidumping Protection and Productivity Growth of Domestic Firms," CEPR Discussion Papers 4620, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  31. Ana Fernandes, 2002. "Trade Policy, Trade Volumes and Plant-Level Productivity in Colombian Manufacturing Industries," Working Papers 847, Economic Growth Center, Yale University.
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