Exports and Manufacturing Productivity in East Asia: A Comparative Analysis with Firm-Level Data

63 Pages Posted: 11 Apr 2002 Last revised: 19 Apr 2002

See all articles by Mary Hallward-Driemeier

Mary Hallward-Driemeier

World Bank - Research Department; World Bank - Development Research Group (DECRG)

Giuseppe Iarossi

World Bank - Research Department

Kenneth L. Sokoloff

University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) - Department of Economics; National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

Date Written: April 2002

Abstract

This paper uses new firm level data from five East Asian countries to explore the patterns of manufacturing productivity across the region. One of the striking patterns that emerges is how the extent of openness and the competitiveness of markets affects the relative productivity of firms across the region. Firms with foreign ownership and firms that export are significantly more productive, and the productivity gap is larger the less developed is the local market. We exploit the rich set of firm characteristics available in the database to explore the sources of export firms' greater productivity. We argue that it is in aiming for export markets that firms make decisions that raise productivity. It is not simply that more-productive firms self-select into exporting; rather, firms that explicitly target export markets consistently make different decisions regarding investment, training, technology and the selection of inputs, and thus raise their productivity.

Suggested Citation

Hallward-Driemeier, Mary and Iarossi, Giuseppe and Sokoloff, Kenneth L., Exports and Manufacturing Productivity in East Asia: A Comparative Analysis with Firm-Level Data (April 2002). NBER Working Paper No. w8894. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=307130

Mary Hallward-Driemeier

World Bank - Research Department ( email )

1818 H Street, N.W.
Washington, DC 20433
United States

HOME PAGE: http://econ.worldbank.org/staff/mhallwarddriemeier

World Bank - Development Research Group (DECRG)

1818 H. Street, N.W.
MSN3-311
Washington, DC 20433
United States

Giuseppe Iarossi

World Bank - Research Department ( email )

1818 H Street, N.W.
Washington, DC 20433
United States

Kenneth L. Sokoloff (Contact Author)

University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) - Department of Economics ( email )

Box 951477
Los Angeles, CA 90095-1477
United States
310-825-4249,310-825-1011 (Phone)
310-825-9528 (Fax)

National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

1050 Massachusetts Avenue
Cambridge, MA 02138
United States

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