nep-tra New Economics Papers
on Transition Economics
Issue of 2010‒02‒13
four papers chosen by
J. David Brown
Heriot-Watt University

  1. Measuring Transaction Costs Using Survey Data on Sales Agreements By Peter Murrell
  2. Agglomeration Premium and Trading Activity of Firms By Gábor Békés; Péter Harasztosi
  3. The Role of Personal Relationships for Doing Business in the GPRD, China – Evidence from Hong Kong Electronics SMEs By Frank Bickenbach; Wan-Hsin LIU
  4. The partnership between the state and the church against trafficking in persons By Goschin, Zizi; Constantin, Daniela-Luminita; Roman , Monica

  1. By: Peter Murrell (Department of Economics, University of Maryland)
    Abstract: A methodology is presented for transaction-cost measurement using reports from businesses. In Romania, transaction costs related to buying and selling are more than 20% of value added. The estimates correlate significantly with variables suggested by theory, indicating validity.
    Keywords: transaction costs, measurement, new institutional economics, Romania
    JEL: L14 D23 C81 P2
    Date: 2010–02
  2. By: Gábor Békés; Péter Harasztosi
    Abstract: Firms may benefit from proximity to each other due to the existence of several externalities. The productivity premia of firms located in agglomerated regions can be attributed to savings and gains from external economies. However, the capacity to absorb information may depend on activities of the firm, such as involvement in international trade. Importers, exporters and two-way traders are likely to employ a different bundle of resources and be organised differently so that they would appreciate inputs and information from other firms in a different fashion and intensity. Getting a better understanding of such external economies by looking at various types of firms is the focus of present paper. Using Hungarian manufacturing data from 1992-2003, we confirm that firms perform better in agglomerated areas and show that traders gain more in terms of productivity than non-traders when agglomeration rises. Firms that are stable participants of international trade gain 16 % in terms of total factor productivity growth as agglomeration doubles while non-traders may not benefit from agglomeration at all. Results also suggest that traders' productivity premium is most apparent in urbanised economies.
    Date: 2010–01–28
  3. By: Frank Bickenbach; Wan-Hsin LIU
    Abstract: This paper investigates the role of personal relationships for doing business in the Greater Pearl River Delta, China. First, it discusses the interplay of formal and informal (relationship-based) institutions from the point of view of institutional economics, with a focus on economies with weak formal contracting and property rights institutions. Second, it describes the institutional environment for doing business in China, and in the PRD in particular. Third, it uses data obtained from a survey among executives of Hong Kong electronics SMEs with business operations in the PRD to gain insights into their perceptions on the importance and the motives of using personal relationships for business in PRD in general, and on the impact of personal relationships on different strategic business decisions (on location, partner, and formal governance structures) for companies’ production as well as innovation activities. The results confirm the importance of personal relationships for doing business in the PRD, in general. There is evidence of substantial differences as to the role of personal relationships between production and innovation activities
    Keywords: personal relationships, formal and informal institutions, production, innovation, China, company survey
    JEL: L20 L63 P0
    Date: 2010–01
  4. By: Goschin, Zizi; Constantin, Daniela-Luminita; Roman , Monica
    Abstract: Trafficking in persons is a multi-sided phenomenon accompanying the current migration flows, therefore, the actions that must be undertaken in order to prevent, combat the phenomenon as well as to assist the victims of trafficking require a large partnership between all the actors involved: international organisations, governmental institutions and representatives of civil society. The special psychological, ethical issues raised especially by trafficking prevention and assistance to victims make the church and various religious organisations play a very important role in the corresponding networks at both international and national level. Even if the integration of the church in the networks fighting against TP has been quite largely addressed worldwide, there are but few studies undertaken in Romania in this area. Our paper opens the room for dialogue among the researchers interested in this topic from an interdisciplinary perspective to discuss the possibilities to establish sustainable partnerships between the state and the church against trafficking in persons. With this aim in view, we have first carried out a quantitative analysis of the scope and dynamics of trafficking in persons in Romania focusing on the victims’ profile by exploitation type. The main socio-demographic characteristics (gender, age, schooling, area of origin) have been considered in order to identify the vulnerability factors related to the risk involved by trafficking, both at national and regional level. We have also examined the responses in legislative and institutional terms, with a special emphasis on the collaboration between the state and the church in preventing and combating trafficking in persons. Of special relevance are the conclusions resulted from the field research undertaken in the area covered by the Diocese of Maramures and Satu Mare.
    Keywords: trafficking in persons; exploitation; gender differentiation; governmental policy; civil society; church; partnership; prevention; combating; assistance to victims
    JEL: R23
    Date: 2009–05–01

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