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European Union’s enlargement to eastern and central Europe’s countries imposed a challenge to southern Europe’s countries. With similar labor intensive specialization patterns, but much lower production costs and better qualified human capital than eastern and central Europe’s countries, southern Europe faced serious threats to their competitiveness. This chapter compares the export performance of these two groups of countries in the period 2000s through the analysis of two specific representative countries: Portugal and Poland. The study is based on a Constant Market Share analysis, which allows to decompose the export growth into several components; and a combination of revealed comparative indexes with a geographical orientation measure. We conclude that while Poland registered a great and impressive export performance across the analyzed period, increasing around 100 % the country’s market share to the EU15, Portugal has evolved in the opposite direction, with an average market share decrease of 7 %. Although it was not the only factor, we conclude that Poland’s competitiveness effect was essential to explain Poland’s increasing industries export share. Several reasons are proposed for the different course taken by the two countries.
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- Portugal and Poland: Two Different Tales on Export Performance to the European Union in the 2000s
Maria Paula Fontoura
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