Export Experience, Product Differentiation, and Firm Survival in Export Markets

Author Name INUI Tomohiko (Faculty Fellow, RIETI) / ITO Keiko (Senshu University) / MIYAKAWA Daisuke (Hitotsubashi University)
Creation Date/NO. July 2015 15-E-086
Research Project Competitiveness of Japanese Firms: Causes and Effects of the Productivity Dynamics
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This paper examines the determinants of firm survival in export markets by explicitly taking into account the impact of firms' previous export market experience and their product differentiation. Utilizing a 16-year panel data set for Japanese manufacturing firms obtained from the Basic Survey of Japanese Business Structure and Activities compiled by the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry, we employ both hazard and panel probit estimations to examine the likelihood of exit from export markets. The results of our estimations show, first, that the exit probability from export markets decreases over the export duration. Second, the probability of exiting from export markets tends to be lower when firms are more research and development (R&D) intensive both prior to and after starting exports. Third, firms in industries that manufacture differentiated products (e.g., machinery) also experience higher survivability in export markets. These results imply that learning from exporting plays an important role in firms' survival in export markets. In addition, our results imply that firms producing differentiated products likely have a greater incentive to make up-front investments to start exporting, and that these investments in turn enable such firms to survive in export markets for a longer period.

Published: Inui, Tomohiko, Keiko Ito, and Daisuke Miyakawa, 2017. "Export experience, product differentiation, and firm survival in export markets," Japanese Economic Review, Vol. 68(2), pp. 217-231