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Industrial Policy and Downstream Export Performance

Bruce A. Blonigen

University of Oregon - Department of Economics; National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

January 2013

NBER Working Paper No. w18694

Industrial policies (IPs) include such varying practices as production subsidies, export subsidies, and import protection, and are commonly used by countries to promote targeted sectors. However, such policies can have significant impacts on sectors other than those targeted by the IPs, particularly when the target sector produces goods that are key inputs to downstream sectors. Surprisingly, there has been little systematic analysis of how IPs in targeted sectors affect other sectors of the economy. Using a new hand-collected database of steel-sector IP use in major steel-producing countries from 1975 through 2000, this paper examines whether steel-sector IPs have a significant impact on the export competitiveness of the country's other manufacturing sectors, particularly those that are significant downstream users of steel. I find that a one-standard-deviation increase in IP presence leads to a 3.6% decline in export competitiveness for an average downstream manufacturing sector. But this effect can be as high as 50% decline for sectors that use steel as an input most intensively. These general negative effects of IPs are primarily due to export subsidies and non-tariff barriers, particularly in less-developed countries.

Number of Pages in PDF File: 30

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Date posted: January 12, 2013  

Suggested Citation

Blonigen, Bruce A., Industrial Policy and Downstream Export Performance (January 2013). NBER Working Paper No. w18694. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2199770

Contact Information

Bruce A. Blonigen (Contact Author)
National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)
1050 Massachusetts Avenue
Cambridge, MA 02138
United States
University of Oregon - Department of Economics ( email )
1285 University of Oregon
Eugene, OR 97403
United States
541-346-4680 (Phone)
541-346-1243 (Fax)
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