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EXPORT PERFORMANCE, COMPETITIVENESS AND COMMODITY COMPOSITION

 

Panayiotis P. Athanasoglou

Bank of Greece

Constantina Backinezos

Bank of Greece

Evangelia A. Georgiou

Bank of Greece

 

 

ABSTRACT

The study of export performance, especially for countries with serious external imbalances, is essential for economic decision-making. This study attempts to evaluate Greek export performance during the 1996-2006 period, using detailed panel data on bilateral trade by product. Factors explaining Greek export market shares are analysed with the method of Constant Market Shares. In addition, the dynamics of the specialization pattern of Greek exports and the effect of price competitiveness on export market shares are examined. The results show a considerable change in export structure, mainly the geographical one, with a favourable effect on market shares. Although the pattern of comparative advantages and the technological intensity of Greek exports have improved, exports remain concentrated in low- and medium-technology sectors, while product variety and quality have declined. Finally, the results show heterogeneity among the panels. In the aggregate, export market shares are inelastic with respect to relative and absolute prices, which would call for focus on non-price factors to improve competitiveness in international markets. However, elasticities are greater than one for a considerable proportion of commodities.

Keywords: export performance; market shares; New Trade Theory; comparative advantages; Markov matrix; price and non-price competitiveness.

 

JEL classification codes: C22; F12; F14; O14.

Acknowledgements: The authors would like to thank I. Papadakis, G. Oikonomou and H. Gibson for very helpful comments and participants in the Bank of Greece workshop and the ECB workshop of September 27 and 28, 2010, on trade and competitiveness,  for valuable suggestions. The views presented in this paper are personal and do not necessarily reflect the views of the Bank of Greece.

 

Correspondence:

Panayiotis P. Athanasoglou,

Economic Research Department,

Bank of Greece, 21, E. Venizelos Ave.,

102 50 Athens, Greece,

Tel. +30210-3202449

Fax +30210-3202696

e-mail:pathanasoglou@bankofgreece.gr



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