nep-int New Economics Papers
on International Trade
Issue of 2012‒02‒20
25 papers chosen by
Alessia A. Amighini
University Amedeo Avogadro

  2. Moving up the Quality ladder? EU-China Trade Dynamics in Clothing By Hylke VANDENBUSSCHE; Francesco DI COMITE; Laura ROVEGNO; Christian VIEGELAHN
  3. The Impact of Historical and Regional Networks on Trade Volumes within the Western Hemisphere: A Gravity Analysis across Sectors By Sandberg, H. Mikael; Seale, James L.
  4. Trade and Investment under Policy Uncertainty: Theory and Firm Evidence By Kyle Handley; Nuno Limão
  5. Are trade costs higher for services than for manufactures? Evidence from firm-level data By Minondo, Asier
  6. Movements of People for Movements of Goods? By Rinaldo Brau; Anna Maria Pinna
  7. Regional integration and natural resources : who benefits ? evidence from MENA By Carrere, Celine; Gourdon, Julien; Olarreaga, Marcelo
  8. French firms at the conquest of Asian markets: The role of export spillovers By Florian MAYNERIS; Sandra PONCET
  9. Disentangling the Demand-enhancing Effect and Trade-cost Effect of Technical Measures in Agricultural Trade among OECD countries By Xiong, Bo; Beghin, John C.
  10. Defying Gravity: The Substitutability of Transportation in International Trade By Lux, Matthias
  11. Trade Costs, FDI incentives, and the Intensity of Price Competition By G. F. Gori; L. Lambertini; A. Tampieri
  12. Verti-zontal Differentiation in Monopolistic Competition By Francesco DI COMITE; Jacques-François THISSE; Hylke VANDENBUSSCHE
  13. Do determinants of FDI to developing countries differ among OECD investors? Insights from Bayesian model averaging By Antonakakis, Nikolaos; Tondl, Gabriele
  14. Preferential Trade Agreements and the World Trade System: A Multilateralist View By Pravin Krishna
  15. Reverse Globalization: Does High Oil Price Volatility Discourage International Trade? By Chen, Shiu-Sheng; Hsu, Kai-Wei
  16. On the Role of Imports in Enhancing Manufacturing Exports By Alessia LO TURCO; Daniela MAGGIONI
  17. Does trade promote peace? squared: a gravity equation in a rectangular panel world By Parlow, Anton
  18. Measuring the Upstreamness of Production and Trade Flows By Pol Antràs; Davin Chor; Thibault Fally; Russell Hillberry
  19. What drives FDI from non-traditional sources? A comparative analysis of the determinants of bilateral FDI flows By Sosa Andrés, Maximiliano; Nunnenkamp, Peter; Busse, Matthias
  20. Information Technology and Bilateral FDI: Theory and Evidence By Jeon, Bang Nam; Tang, Linghui; Zhu, Lei
  21. China's Potential Future Growth and Gains from Trade Policy Bargaining: Some Numerical Simulation Results By Chunding Li; John Whalley
  22. Export Dynamics and Sales at Home By Nicolas Berman; Antoine Berthou; Jérôme Héricourt
  23. Gold Standard Gravity By James E. Anderson; Yoto V. Yotov
  24. The role of language in shaping international migration By Alicia Adsera; Mariola Pytlikova
  25. Determinants of international migrations to Italian provinces By Morettini, Gabriele; Presbitero, Andrea F.; Tamberi, Massimo

  1. By: Inmaculada Martínez-Zarzoso (Universitat Jaume I); Anca M. Voicu (Department of Economics Rollins College); Martina Vidovic (Department of Economics Rollins College)
    Abstract: We estimate a gravity model that incorporates the extensive margin of trade and accounts for firm heterogeneity to evaluate the effect of the EU-accession on CEECs trade in intermediates and final goods for the period 1999-2009. The importance of production networks is captured by including imports of intermediates as a determinant of a country’s exports of final goods. We find a positive and significant effect of the EU-accession on CEECs trade in intermediate and final goods. Hence, the elimination of “behind the border” trade barriers has a positive impact on increasing not only trade volumes but also trade varieties.
    Keywords: gravity equation; panel data; production networks; economic integration; trade flows.
    JEL: F10 F14
    Date: 2012
  2. By: Hylke VANDENBUSSCHE (UNIVERSITE CATHOLIQUE DE LOUVAIN, Institut de Recherches Economiques et Sociales (IRES )and Center for Operations Research and Econometrics (CORE), CEPR &KULeuven, LICOS); Francesco DI COMITE (UNIVERSITE CATHOLIQUE DE LOUVAIN, Institut de Recherches Economiques et Sociales (IRES) and EU Commission); Laura ROVEGNO (UNIVERSITE CATHOLIQUE DE LOUVAIN, Institut de Recherches Economiques et Sociales (IRES)); Christian VIEGELAHN (UNIVERSITE CATHOLIQUE DE LOUVAIN, Institut de Recherches Economiques et Sociales (IRES) and International Labour Organization-Geneva)
    Abstract: This paper compares European and Chinese exports in the clothing sector since the end of the Multi-Fiber Arrangement in 2005. Using detailed product-level data from UN Comtrade, we document the pattern of export prices and quantities observed for both countries, considering both exports to the rest of the world and to a particular destination market. We find that within narrowly defined product categories, European varieties typically sell for a higher price than Chinese varieties. But this price gap is narrowing. Despite rising prices, Chinese varieties are increasingly selling more than European varieties, suggesting that quality differences are narrowing. While European “core” products in clothing are stable over time, Chinese exports show strong product dynamics with exit and entry of new “core” products every year and “core” products changing rapidly. Both China and the EU export in every product category, resulting in a perfect product overlap with no products being exported by only one of the two. To make sure that our findings are not driven by a different product mix or a different destination country mix of EU versus Chinese exports, we compare EU and Chinese exports of clothing to the US and limit the comparison to HS6 product categories that are exported by both countries to the US. Again we obtain similar results as those obtained by comparing EU and Chinese exports to the rest of the world. Also, our evidence is suggestive of China exporting its high quality goods, while the EU exporting its most efficiently produced goods.
    Date: 2011–12–14
  3. By: Sandberg, H. Mikael; Seale, James L.
    Abstract: This paper identifies and analyzes the effects of existing trade networks on bilateral trade volumes in the Western Hemisphere by applying the gravity model of international trade to two data-sets, one encompassing bilateral trade volumes of agricultural products and one encompassing bilateral trade volumes of manufactured goods.
    Keywords: International trade, gravity models, history, regional trade agreements., International Relations/Trade, F1 (International trade), F15 (Economic integration), F54 (Post-colonialism), F55 (International institutional arrangements).,
    Date: 2012–02
  4. By: Kyle Handley; Nuno Limão
    Abstract: We provide theoretical and empirical evidence that policy uncertainty can significantly affect firm level investment and entry decisions in the context of international trade. When market entry costs are sunk, policy uncertainty can create a real option value of waiting to enter foreign markets until conditions improve or uncertainty is resolved. Using a dynamic, heterogeneous firms model we show that: (i) investment and entry into export markets is reduced when trade policy is uncertain, and (ii) preferential trade agreements (PTAs) are valuable to exporters even if applied trade barriers are currently low or zero. We derive a structural equation that predicts how firm entry responds to changes in applied tariffs and a theory-based measure of policy uncertainty. Our novel approach using observable trade policies allows us to estimate the impact of policy uncertainty and quantify its aggregate implications. We apply this method to Portugal's accession to the European Community in 1986 using new firm-level trade data. We find that (i) the trade policy reform accounted for a large fraction of the observed Portuguese exporting firms' entry and sales upon accession (ii) the accession removed uncertainty about future preferences and (iii) this uncertainty channel accounted for a large fraction of the predicted growth. These results have broader implications for other PTAs and our approach can be applied to analyze other sources of policy uncertainty.
    JEL: D8 D92 E22 F02 F1 F5 H32 O24
    Date: 2012–01
  5. By: Minondo, Asier
    Abstract: Using a unique database, I estimate the costs of trading with European Union countries, relative to the costs of trading with the domestic market, for services and manufacturing firms located in the Basque Country region of Spain. I find that, despite the dramatic improvement in information and communication technologies, international trade costs for services are still much larger than for manufactures. Based on standard elasticities of substitution used in the literature, our results suggest that the tariff equivalent of international trade costs is between 50% and 60% larger for services than for manufactures.
    Keywords: trade costs; exports; services; manufactures; firm-level evidence; Basque-Country
    JEL: F23 F14 F19
    Date: 2012–01
  6. By: Rinaldo Brau; Anna Maria Pinna
    Abstract: While it is well established to think of international tourism as a type of exports, namely ‘home’ exports, the potential of tourism flows as an engine for fostering trade among countries is a poorly studied topic. In this paper we show that this relationship can be studied at a very detailed level by exploiting the disaggregation of existing information on international trade and inbound tourism. We consider a sample of 25 countries belonging to the European Union, a region which has been interested by common shocks such as the establishment of the Euro as the new currency for many countries and the liberalization in the air transport market. We carry out a panel data analysis by means of which we assess whether international tourist arrivals by a given country activate additional exports towards the same country. We find not only that tourism can promote exports, but also that this effect displays important differences depending on whether or not consumption goods are considered. This finding is consistent with the idea that the experience of tourists in a given destination reduces the fixed costs of trade, thus facilitating access to the advantages of international trade for more peripheral economies.
    Keywords: tourism and trade; bilateral exports; bilateral tourist flows.
    JEL: F14 F15 L83
    Date: 2011
  7. By: Carrere, Celine; Gourdon, Julien; Olarreaga, Marcelo
    Abstract: This paper builds on theoretical predictions that show that gains from regional integration are unevenly distributed between resource rich and poor countries. It explores the effects of different integration schemes in the Middle East and North Africa. The results suggest that within the Pan Arab Free Trade Agreement, there is significant trade creation for resource poor countries associated with regional integration, and no evidence of trade diversion. In resource rich countries, however, there is evidence of pure trade diversion in both resource-rich/labor-abundant countries and resource-rich/labor-importing countries. This underscores the idea that regional integration can help to spread the benefits of unevenly distributed resource wealth among the region's economies.
    Keywords: Free Trade,Trade Law,Trade Policy,Economic Theory&Research,Trade and Regional Integration
    Date: 2012–02–01
  8. By: Florian MAYNERIS (UNIVERSITE CATHOLIQUE DE LOUVAIN, Institut de Recherches Economiques et Sociales (IRES) and Center for Operations Research and Econometrics (CORE)); Sandra PONCET (Université Paris 1, Paris School of Economics and CEPII)
    Abstract: In this study, we explore the role of export spillovers on the capacity of French firms to conquer Asian markets. We confirm, in the context of France, previous results emphasizing the positive impact of surrounding exporters on the probability that a firm starts exporting a given product to a given country. We find that export spillovers are more important for export starts to Asia than for export starts to other countries. Moreover, for the specific Asian destinations, we find evidence of a heterogeneous effect of export spillovers. The presence of surrounding exporting firms appears especially beneficial to small and less productive firms, ad more intense for export starts to Asian countries characterized by low GDP per capita and tough administrative procedures on imports. Hence, export spillovers may help small firms to enter on the most difficult Asian markets.
    Date: 2011–11–29
  9. By: Xiong, Bo; Beghin, John C.
    Abstract: Domestic technical measures such as SPS and TBTs can enhance import demand via information disclosure and quality improvement, or hamper foreign export supply via imposing sizeable compliance costs, or both. The traditional gravity equation model estimates the net effect of these measures on international trade with a loss of useful inference on separate effects. We stipulate a generalized gravity equation model to disentangle the two effects. We apply the augmented approach to agricultural trade among OECD countries in 2004. We find that technical measures in agriculture often jointly enhance import demand and hinder export supply with the net effect of promoting the propensity to trade. Further disaggregated data analysis reveals heterogeneity across sectors in terms of net effects of technical measures, despite common demand-enhancing and supply-hindering effects. These measures in the net decrease the probability of intra-OECD trade in dairy products, whereas they increase that of intra-OECD trade in cereal preparations.
    Keywords: sanitary and phytosanitary, SPS, technical measures, NTM, TBT, standards, gravity equation, protectionism, OECD, International Relations/Trade,
    Date: 2011
  10. By: Lux, Matthias
    Abstract: What role do individual modes of transportation play in international trade? To study this question, I develop a model of international trade that incorporates a role for transportation and thus allows me to study mode-specific trade flows. I use a novel data set to estimate the complete model for a sample of 79 countries distinguishing air, sea, and surface transportation. The estimated model implies that surface transportation is mostly used for trade over short distances, whereas air and sea transportation dominate long-distance trade. Furthermore, the different modes of transportation display a high degree of substitutability. Using counterfactual analysis I show the implications for the roles played by the different modes of transportation. Long-distance modes are more important for poor countries because in order for them to realize gains from trade they need access to technologically advanced but far-away markets. Rich countries, on the other hand, can substitute long-distance trade more easily for trade with neighboring countries without changing the gains from trade much. As a consequence, reducing the estimated asymmetries in mode-specific trade costs for only one long-distance mode, either air or sea, can reduce income differences in the sample by about 35%.
    Keywords: international trade; transportation; trade costs; economic geography
    JEL: F1
    Date: 2011–05
  11. By: G. F. Gori; L. Lambertini; A. Tampieri
    Abstract: Empirical evidence shows that an increase in trade liberalisation causes an increase in foreign direct investments (FDIs). Here we propose an explanation to this apparent puzzle by exploiting the intensity of competition in a Bertrand duopoly with convex costs where the two firms enter in a new market. We adopt Dastidar's (1995) approach, delivering a continuum of Bertrand-Nash equilibria ranging above marginal cost pricing, to show that softening competition may indeed more than offset the standard effect generated by trade costs, thereby leading to a positive relationship between trade liberalisation and FDIs.
    JEL: F12 F13 F23
    Date: 2012–02
  12. By: Francesco DI COMITE (UNIVERSITE CATHOLIQUE DE LOUVAIN, Institut de Recherches Economiques et Sociales (IRES) and European Commission ,DGECFIN); Jacques-François THISSE (UNIVERSITE CATHOLIQUE DE LOUVAIN, Center for Operations Research and Econometrics (CORE)); Hylke VANDENBUSSCHE (UNIVERSITE CATHOLIQUE DE LOUVAIN, Institut de Recherches Economiques et Sociales (IRES) and Center for Operations Research and Econometrics (CORE), National Bank of Belgium and KULeuven,Licos)
    Abstract: The pattern of trade observed from firm-product-country data calls for a new generation of models. To address the unexplained variation in the data, we propose a new model of monopolistic competition where varieties enter preferences non-symmetrically, capturing both horizontal and vertical differentiation in an unprecedented way. Together with a variable elasticity of substitution, competition effects, varying markups and prices across countries, this results in a tractable model whose predictions differ from existing ones. Using the population of Belgian exporters, our model succeeds in explaining the hitherto unexplained variation. The implications call for a re-thinking of earlier results and measurement practices.
    Keywords: Heterogeneous firms, Horizontal differentiation, Vertical differentiation, Monopolistic competition, Non-symmetric varieties
    JEL: D43 F12 F14 L16
    Date: 2011–12–06
  13. By: Antonakakis, Nikolaos; Tondl, Gabriele
    Abstract: The main objective of this paper is to examine the determining factors of outward FDI from four major OECD investors US, Germany, France and the Netherlands to developing countries located in different world regions. Our goal is to elucidate whether the motivation for FDI differs among these investors. Rather than relying on specific theories of FDI determinants we examine them all simultaneously employing Bayesian Model Averaging (BMA) in a panel data set with 129 FDI destinations in 5 geographical regions over the period 1995-2008. This approach permits us to select the most appropriate model that governs FDI allocation and to distinguish robust FDI determinants. We find that all our investors search for destinations with whom they have established intensive trade relations and that offer a qualified labor force. However, low wages and attractive tax rates are robust investment criteria too, and a considerable share of FDI is still resource-driven. Our investors show fairly similar strategies in the main FDI destinations. --
    Keywords: FDI determinants,Bayesian Model Averaging,OECD,developing countries,US,Germany,France,Netherlands
    JEL: C11 F0 F21
    Date: 2012
  14. By: Pravin Krishna
    Abstract: This paper reviews recent developments in international trade to evaluate several arguments concerning the merits of preferential trade agreements (PTAs) and their place in the world trade system. Taking a multilateralist perspective, it makes several points: First, despite the proliferation of PTAs in recent years, the actual amount of liberalization that has been achieved through PTAs is actually quite limited. Second, at least a few studies point to significant trade diversion in the context of particular PTAs and thus serve as a cautionary note against casual dismissals of trade diversion as a merely theoretical concern. Equally, adverse effects on the terms-of-trade of non-member countries have also been found in the literature. Third, while the literature has found mixed results on the question of whether tariff preferences help or hurt multilateral liberalization, the picture is different with the more elastic tools of trade policy, such as antidumping duties (ADs); the use of ADs against non-members appears to have dramatically increased while the use of ADs against partner countries within PTAs has fallen. Fourth, despite the rapid expansion of preferences in trade, intra-PTA trade shares are relatively small for most PTAs; multilateral remain relevant to most member countries of the WTO.
    JEL: F1 F13
    Date: 2012–02
  15. By: Chen, Shiu-Sheng; Hsu, Kai-Wei
    Abstract: This paper examines whether higher oil price volatility causes a reversal in globalization. Using a large annual panel data set covering 84 countries all over the world from 1984 to 2008, we investigate the impacts of oil price fluctuations on international trade, namely exports and imports. We present strong and robust evidence that international trade flows will be lower when oil prices fluctuate significantly. We therefore conclude that oil price volatility hurts globalization.
    Keywords: oil price shocks; oil price volatility; international trade; reverse globalization
    JEL: F40 Q40
    Date: 2012–01–25
  16. By: Alessia LO TURCO (Universita' Politecnica delle Marche, Dipartimento di Economia); Daniela MAGGIONI (Universita' Politecnica delle Marche, Dipartimento di Economia)
    Abstract: Making use of a large panel dataset on Italian manufacturing rms, we provide evidence on the effect of imports on the firm export performance. We distinguish imports of intermediates according to their origin and we find that inputs sourced from low labour cost countries promote the firms' export activity. Imports from high-income countries do not significantly contribute to the export orientation of firms, especially when persistence in export is considered and the possible endogeneity of the import measures is accounted for via System GMM estimation of a linear probability model. Our evidence suggests that the impact of imports on the firms' entry in export markets works through the cost saving channel rather than the technology channel.
    Keywords: cheap labour countries, exporters, importers
    JEL: D22 F14
    Date: 2011–06
  17. By: Parlow, Anton
    Abstract: The purpose of this paper is to revisit the question if trade promotes peace or not? I account for heterogeneity of trade dyads over time in using panel estimation techniques. The world is modeled as a rectangle. I present models focusing on how conflict affects trade, and in another set of models how trade affects conflict. To account for simultaneity I use past values of trade and conflict, as well an instrumental variable approach. My instruments to explain conflict are military expenditures and a military capability index. The instrumental variable to explain trade is annual rainfall. I find in most setups that trade and interstate conflict are reciprocal. Trade indeed promotes peace because of welfare gained from international trade. Past values of conflict or trade have a negative impact in their respective models. Only after accounting for endogeneity in using an instrumental variable approach, the negative relationship becomes insignificant or positive in some setups. I employ a dynamic panel estimator to deal with possible limitations of the instrumental variables.
    Keywords: Trade; Conflicts; GDP; Gravity model
    JEL: F14 O19 N40
    Date: 2011–12–01
  18. By: Pol Antràs; Davin Chor; Thibault Fally; Russell Hillberry
    Abstract: We propose two distinct approaches to the measurement of industry upstreamness (or average distance from final use) and show that they yield an equivalent measure. Furthermore, we provide two additional interpretations of this measure, one of them related to the concept of forward linkages in Input-Output analysis. On the empirical side, we construct this measure for 426 industries using the 2002 US Input-Output Tables. We also verify the stability of upstreamness across countries in the OECD STAN database, albeit with a more aggregated industry classification. Finally, we present an application that explores the determinants of the average upstreamness of exports at the country level using trade flows for 2002.
    JEL: F10 F14 L16 L23 O14
    Date: 2012–02
  19. By: Sosa Andrés, Maximiliano; Nunnenkamp, Peter; Busse, Matthias
    Abstract: Non-traditional source countries of FDI play an increasingly important role, notably in developing host countries. This raises the question of whether the determinants of FDI differ systematically between traditional and non-traditional source countries. We perform Logit and Poisson Pseudo Maximum Likelihood estimations drawing on UNCTAD's database on bilateral FDI flows, including various emerging and developing countries as sources of FDI outflows. We find that economic geography variables are more relevant for FDI from non-traditional sources, while non-traditional investors appear to be as risk adverse as traditional investors. Access to raw materials represents a less important driving force of FDI from non-traditional sources. The differences are less pronounced for other types of FDI. --
    Keywords: FDI flows,types of FDI,source-host country pairs,location choices,gravity-type models
    JEL: F21
    Date: 2012
  20. By: Jeon, Bang Nam; Tang, Linghui; Zhu, Lei
    Abstract: This paper investigates the impact of communication cost on the FDI activities of multinational corporations (MNCs). First, we provide a theoretical foundation for a gravity-type FDI model, which shows that physical distance and communication technology are important determinants of FDI activities. Second, we apply the IT-augmented gravity model to bilateral FDI data for a total of 47 OECD and non-OECD countries from 1980 to 1997 and find that distance is negatively related to inward FDI stocks while the growth of IT, measured by teledensity and celldensity, has encouraged FDI significantly. The impact is found to be more prominent on FDI from G7 countries to OECD countriesthan to non-OECD countries, and more prominent in the 1990s than in the 1980s. Moreover, IT plays a more effective role by reducing communication cost when distance is beyond a threshold range.
    Keywords: communication cost; FDI; distance
    JEL: F23 F21
    Date: 2012–02–01
  21. By: Chunding Li; John Whalley
    Abstract: Numerical simulation analysis of bargaining solutions is little developed in existing literature. Here we use a multi country, single period numerical general equilibrium model which captures China and her major trading partners and examine the outcomes of trade policy bargaining solutions (bargaining over tariffs and financial transfers) over time as China grows more rapidly than her trade partners. We compute gains relative to non-cooperative Nash equilibria for a range of model parameterizations. This yields a measure of both absolute and relative gain to China from bargaining. We calibrate our model to base case data for 2008 and use a model formulation where there are heterogeneous goods across countries. The gains from trade bargaining accrue more heavily to other countries when we use 2008 data rather than later year data. We then consider the impacts out into the future of different country growth rates which sharply increases China’s relative size. Our objective is to assess how China’s gains from bargaining change over time; whether they grow at a faster rate than GDP growth and for which parameterizations. Our simulation results indicate that China’s welfare gain from trade bargaining will increase over time if countries keep their present GDP growth rates for several decades, but there are major difference when using different bargaining solution concepts. These differences have not been noted in existing literature but have an intuitive explanation. Our results also indicate that if China jointly bargains along with India, Brazil and other developing countries with the OECD, China’s gain will further increase. Bargaining gains are also sensitive to country size. When we use PPP to adjust China’s relative GDP size; China’s trade bargaining welfare gain increases by about 37%.
    JEL: C68 C78 D60
    Date: 2012–02
  22. By: Nicolas Berman; Antoine Berthou; Jérôme Héricourt
    Keywords: Export dynamics, domestic sales, markets, liquidity
    JEL: F10 F44 L20 A A A
    Date: 2011–12
  23. By: James E. Anderson; Yoto V. Yotov
    Abstract: This paper provides striking confirmation of the restrictions of the structural gravity model of trade. Structural forces predicted by theory explain 95% of the variation of the fixed effects used to control for them in the recent gravity literature, fixed effects that in principle could reflect other forces. This validation opens avenues to inferring unobserved sectoral activity and multilateral resistance variables by equating fixed effects with structural gravity counterparts. Our findings also provide important validation of a host of general equilibrium comparative static exercises based on the structural gravity model.
    JEL: F1
    Date: 2012–02
  24. By: Alicia Adsera (Princeton University and IZA); Mariola Pytlikova (Aarhus University, CCP, CIM and CReAM)
    Abstract: Fluency in (or ease to quickly learn) the language of the destination country plays a key role in the transfer of human capital from the source country to another country and boosts the immigrant’s rate of success at the destination’s labor market. This suggests that the ability to learn and speak a foreign language might be an important factor in the migration decision. We use a novel dataset on immigration flows and stocks of foreigners in 30 OECD destination countries from 223 source countries for the years 1980–2009 and a wide range of linguistic indicators to study the role of language in shaping international migration. Specifically, we investigate how both linguistic distance and linguistic diversity, as a proxy for the “potential” ease to learn a new language and to adapt to a new context, affect migration. We find that migration rates increase with linguistic proximity and the result is robust to the inclusion of genetic distance as a proxy for cultural proximity and to the use of multiple measures of linguistic distance. Interestingly, linguistic proximity matters more for migrants moving into non-English speaking destinations than to English-speaking countries. The likely higher proficiency of the average migrant in English rather than in other languages may diminish the relevance of the linguistic proximity indicators to English speaking destinations. Finally, destinations that are linguistically more diverse and polarized attract fewer migrants than those with a single language; whereas more linguistic polarization at origin seems to act as a push factor.
    Keywords: International migration, language.
    JEL: J61 F22 O15
    Date: 2012–01
  25. By: Morettini, Gabriele; Presbitero, Andrea F.; Tamberi, Massimo
    Abstract: International migration flows constitute one of the most policy-relevant elements of modern economies. The Italian experience is a case of particular interest given the rapid growth of immigration flows, the large number of countries of origin involved, and regional economic heterogeneity. This paper analyses the bilateral stocks of migrants coming from 142 countries and living in 103 Italian provinces to ascertain what characteristics of home countries and destination provinces are associated with international migrations. The results of the estimation of a gravity model on the stock of migrants show that economic, demographic and institutional variables are correlated with migration patterns. In light of the recent Arab Spring, it is interesting to note that migrants come to Italy predominantly from geographically close, democratic and middle-income countries.
    Keywords: International migrations; Italy; Gravity model
    JEL: F22 R12 O52
    Date: 2012–01

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