Western and Central Africa
Eastern and Southern Africa
Eastern Europe and Central Asia
WP-01-2017.E: SMEs in the world of global value chains [PDF]Mauro Boffa, ITC, Geneva, SwitzerlandMarion Jansen, ITC, Geneva, Switzerland
Olga Solleder, ITC, Geneva, SwitzerlandShort description: Large manufacturing multinationals have increased their productivity by creating, shaping and participating in Global Value Chains (GVCs). Contemporary international trade theory specifies how opening up to trade reorganizes exporting firms based on their productivity levels. The paper builds a case for the role that GVC participation may play on the competitiveness of Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs). Using firm-level insights and information on trade in value-added; we find that some indicators of GVC participation are correlated with SMEs’ competitiveness. We attempt to provide a causal framework with the help of an instrumental variables estimator.
WP-02-2017.E: Do we need deeper trade agreements for GVCs or just a BIT? [PDF]Forthcoming in the World EconomyMauro Boffa, ITC, Geneva, Switzerland
Marion Jansen, ITC, Geneva, SwitzerlandOlga Solleder, ITC, Geneva, SwitzerlandShort description: The paper investigates two policies geared toward stimulating and shaping Global Value Chains (GVCs), namely Deep Regional Trade Agreements (DRTAs) and Bilateral Investment Treaties (BITs). In an augmented gravity model, we test the impact of both policies on a variety of trade in value added indicators. We find that both policies are likely to increase GVC trade, although their transmission channels differ. While backward linkages are stimulated through both BITs and DRTAs, forward linkages respond only to DRTAs. The estimates suggest that negotiating a DRTA with investment provisions has a higher impact on trade in value added than signing a shallow RTA and a separate BIT.
WP-03-2017.E: Extracting value in South-South and South-North value chains [PDF]Loe Franssen, ITC, Geneva, SwitzerlandShort description: We exploit a detailed dataset of the activities reported by 515 East African firms in three international value chains at the task level. We design a methodology that can quantify the position of individual firms in international value chains, based on the share of a chain’s total value added that firms can extract. We then include this variable as a determinant of value trade and find that it is associated with higher value chain trade at the extensive margin and lower value chain trade at the intensive margin. The latter effect is mainly driven by firms engaged in South-North value chains. In South-South value chains, the share of value-added is positively correlated with firms’ sales.
WP-04-2017.E: Exploring firm competitiveness: A factor analysis approach [PDF]
Justine Falciola, University of Geneva
Marion Jansen, International Trade Centre
Valentina Rollo, International Trade CentreShort description:This paper uses confirmatory factor analysis (CFA) to build an index of firm competitiveness and fill a gap in the literature. The proposed competitiveness framework and its subcomponents, tested by the CFA, are identified according to the review of the economic and management literature and related empirical evidence. We use data from the World Bank Enterprise Surveys for 100 countries of different income and development status. Our results suggest that the competitiveness index is positively correlated with commonly used proxies of competitiveness, such as labour productivity, the probability to export, the percentage of inputs of foreign origin used by the firm and the share of total sales that were exported. Moreover, the competitiveness framework proves to apply to firms of different sizes and to both exporting and non-exporting firms.
The SME Competitiveness Outlook is ITC's flagship report, published annually since 2015. Each report provides an in-depth analysis on a particular topic related to the competitiveness of small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) - from their contribution to inclusive growth to their participation in regional value chains. The reports combine data analysis, academic insights, thought leader opinions, and case studies to provide guidance for policymakers, business managers, and trade and investment support institutions. In addition, the reports contain country profiles for over 80 countries with statistics on the competitiveness of SMEs.