NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH
NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH

The Role of Intermediaries in Facilitating Trade

JaeBin Ahn, Amit K. Khandelwal, Shang-Jin Wei

NBER Working Paper No. 15706
Issued in January 2010
NBER Program(s):ITI

We provide systematic evidence that intermediaries play an important role in facilitating trade using a firm-level the census of China's exports. Intermediaries account for around 20% of China's exports in 2005. This implies that many firms engage in trade without directly exporting products. We modify a heterogeneous firm model so that firms endogenously select their mode of export - either directly or indirectly through an intermediary. The model predicts that intermediaries will be relatively more important in markets that are more difficult to penetrate. We provide empirical confirmation for this prediction, and generate new facts regarding the activity of intermediaries.

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Document Object Identifier (DOI): 10.3386/w15706

Published: Ahn, JaeBin & Khandelwal, Amit K. & Wei, Shang-Jin, 2011. "The role of intermediaries in facilitating trade," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 84(1), pages 73-85, May. citation courtesy of

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