Indonesia and China: Friends or Foes? Quality Competition and Firm Productivity

Authors: Lili Yan Ing (Economic Research Institute for ASEAN and East Asia / ERIA ), Miaojie Yu (Peking University), and Ray Zhang (Peking University). Date of publication: December 2016

We define and measure “firm-product-destination-year-specific export quality” and investigate how quality competition from China affects Indonesian firm productivity in the domestic and export markets. Our results suggest that an increase in Chinese exported product quality by 10 percent will increase the productivity of Indonesian firms by 0.4 – 0.5 percent in Indonesia’s domestic market, and increase Indonesian exporters’ productivity by 2 percent in the export market. Where we limit our sample to exporters only, an increase in Chinese exported product quality will increase Indonesian firm productivity in the export market, but not in the domestic market. Our findings broaden the horizon through which firms could benefit from opening up to trade.

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