Sergio De Nardis, Fabrizio Traù

Specializzazione settoriale e qualità dei prodotti: misure della pressione competitiva dell'industria italiana

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The paper analyses the sectoral pattern of Italian manufacturing exports, as compared to the export pattern of its main competitors in the Oecd market. The analysis is carried out at the four-digit level of the SITC (Rev 3) Classification, and is extended to estimate the quality of products (as it is revealed by their average unit values). It is showed that the competitive pressures on Italian industries are rather low, when measured by quality-adjusted export similarity indeces. While these findings may appear as involving positive consequences for the Italian export performance, nevertheless they imply that international forces pressing towards structural change are relatively weak in the Italian economy. Hence, the Italian pattern of specialisation is bound to persist notwithstanding the increasing role played in world trade by low-cost exporting countries.

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