Export Promotion Aims and Reality: A Comparison of the Iberian, Baltic and Central European Region

Open access


As a consequence of the international crisis in 2008-2009, the role of exports in economic growth came into focus in most countries. Exports of EU Member States gained momentum from 2010 onward but with certain changes in their structure and direction. In several countries, the turn towards non-EU areas, such as China or Latin America was part of the state export strategy. On the one hand, our article describes these foreign trade strategies and their institutional framework of the Iberian, Baltic and Central European governments, detecting possible similarities. On the other hand, we analyse recent export data. This way we can get a picture on the structure and direction of exports of periphery economies and this can be compared to the aims of the given states. Our hypothesis is that there is a gap between the reality and the intentions of the governments. The size of this gap varies and is influenced by certain factors such as the different involvement of multinational companies in foreign trade or the different economic structure of these countries. In our paper we list which countries adopted a government strategy and with what aim. We provide a short literature review on state trade promotion policies and discuss these policies and their institutions in the Baltic, Visegrád and Iberian countries.

AICEP (n.d.), Associação para o Investimento e Comércio Externo de Portugal. Retrieved from http://www.portugalglobal.pt/EN/about-us/Pages/about-us.aspx#sthash.0U245B6L.dpuf [accessed May 2017]

Amador, J. & Stehrer, R. (2014), ‘Portuguese exports in the global value chains,’ Banco de Portugal Economic Bulletin, April, pp. 64-78.

Antalóczy, K. & Éltető, A. (2016), Post-crisis foreign trade trends and policies on the periphery of the European Union - comparison of the Iberian, Baltic and Central European region, IWE Working Paper, no. 224.

Bacchetta, M.; Jansen, M.; Lennon, C. & Piermartini, R. (2009), ‘Exposure to external shocks and the geographical diversification of exports,’ in R. Newframer et al. (eds.) Breaking into New Markets. Emerging Lessons for Export Diversification, Chapter 4, Geneva: The World Bank.

Benkovskis, K.; Bērziņa, S. & Zorgenfreija, L. (2016), “Evaluation of Latvia’s reexports using firm-level trade data,” Baltic Journal of Economics, vol. 16, no. 1, pp. 1-20. https://doi.org/10.1080/1406099X.2016.1163891

Durmuşoğlu, S.; Apfelthalter, G.; Nayir, D. Z.; Alvarez, R. & Mughan, T. (2012), ‘The effect of government-designed export promotion service use on small and medium-sized enterprise goal achievement: A multidimensional view of export performance,’ Industrial Marketing Management, no. 41, pp. 680-691. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.indmarman.2011.09.016

EC (2014), Competitiveness and Internationalisation OP: Portugal, EU Regional Policy programme. Retrieved from http://ec.europa.eu/regional_policy/en/atlas/programmes/2014-2020/portugal/2014pt16m3op001 [accessed May 2017]

-- (2016), 2016 SBA Fact Sheet - Latvia, European Commission Directorate-General for Internal Market, Industry, Entrepreneurship and SMEs. Retrieved from http://ec.europa.eu/DocsRoom/documents/22382/attachments/20/translations/en/renditions/native [accessed May 2017]

Éltető, A. (2015), ‘Foreign trade tends in the EU10 countries,’ in A. Éltető (ed.) Mind the Gap. Integration Experiences of the Ten Central and Eastern European Countries, Budapest: Centre for Economic and Regional Studies of the Hungarian Academy of Sciences, Institute of World Economics, pp. 41-60.

Éltető, A. & Szunomár, Á. (2016) ‘Chinese investment and trade - strengthening ties with Central and Eastern Europe,’ International Journal of Business and Management, vol. 4, no. 1, pp. 24-48.

Estonian Ministry of Economic Affairs and Communications (2014), Made in Estonia 3.0, The Estonian foreign investments and export action plan for the years 2014-2017 for increasing the export capacity of Estonian companies and involving foreign investments. Retrieved from https://www.mkm.ee/sites/default/files/mie_3.0_english_version.pdf [accessed May 2017]

García-Legaz, P. J. (2016), ‘Logros y retos del sector exterior de la economía espanola,’ in Economistas, no. 148, Madrid: Colegio de Economistas, pp. 6-9.

Gil-Pareja, S.; Llorca-Vivero, R.; Martinez-Serrano, J. A. & Requena-Silvente, F. (2015), ‘Regional export promotion offices and trade margins,’ Review of World Economy, vol. 151, pp. 145-167. https://doi.org/10.1007/s10290-014-0199-0

Government of Hungary (2011), Külgazdasági Stratégia. Retrieved from http://www.kormany.hu/download/1/d7/30000/kulgazdasagi_strategia.pdf [accessed May 2017]

Head, K. & Ries, J. (2010), ‘Do trade missions increase trade?’ Canadian Journal of Economics, vol. 43, no. 3, pp. 754-775.

HIPA (n.d.), Hungarian Investment Promotion Agency. [Homepage] Retrieved from www.hipa.hu/main [accessed May 2017]

ICEX (n.d.), ICEX España Exportación e Inversiones. [Homepage] Retrieved from www.icex.es [accessed May 2017]

Janssen, C. (2016), Design of Export Credit Agencies, MA thesis, Erasmus University of Rotterdam.

Kerner, R. (2012), “Estonia’s trade in the world of globalisation,” Quarterly Bulletin of Statistics Estonia, no. 2.

Kotabe, M. & Czinkota, M. R. (1992), ‘State government promotion of manufacturing exports: a gap analysis,’ Journal of International Business Studies, vol. 23, no. 4, pp. 637-658. https://doi.org/10.1057/palgrave.jibs.8490281

Lietuvos Bankas (2014), Economic Review, May 2014, Vilnius.

Los, B.; Timmer, M. & de Vries, G. (2015), “Global value chains: ‘Factory World’ is emerging,” in J. J. Amador & F. di Mauro (eds.) The Age of Global Value Chains: Maps and Policy Issues, London: CEPR Press, pp. 36-47.

Malaket, A. R. (2014), Financing Trade and International Supply Chains: Commerce Across Borders, Finance Across Frontiers, Surrey & Burlington: Gower.

Ministerstwo Rozwoju (2016), Program wspierania ekspansji międzynarodowej polskich przedsiębiorstw. Retrieved from https://www.mr.gov.pl/strony/aktualnosci/program-wspierania-ekspansji-miedzynarodowej-polskich-przedsiebiorstw/ [accessed May 2017]

Ministry of Economic Development of Poland (2016), Plan na Rzecz Odpowiedzialnego Rozwoju, Draft of document disseminated to public consultations, 29 July 2016. Retrieved from https://www.mr.gov.pl/media/23749/SOR_29072016_projekt.pdf [accessed May 2017]

Ministry of Economics of the Republic of Latvia (2012), Guidelines on National Industrial Policy of Latvia (Unofficial translation). Retrieved from https://www.em.gov.lv/files/uznemejdarbiba/finl_en.pdf [accessed May 2017]

Ministry of Economy of the Republic of Lithuania (2015), ’Export promotion policy.’ Retrieved from https://ukmin.lrv.lt/en/sector-activities/export/export-promotionpolicy [accessed May 2017]

Ministry of Foreign and European Affairs of the Slovak Republic (2014), Assessment of Foreign and European Policy Tasks of the Slovak Republic. Retrieved from https://www.mzv.sk/documents/30297/124956/150420_sprava_ZP_EN_.pdf [accessed May 2017]

Ministry of the Industry and Trade of the Czech Republic (2012), Export Strategy of the Czech Republic. Retrieved from http://www.mpo.cz/dokument104211.html [accessed May 2017]

Moons, S. J. V. & Van Bergeijk, P. A. G. (2013), Economic Diplomacy Works: A meta-analysis of its effect on international economic flows, Prepared for MAER Colloquium.

Nitsch, V. (2005), State Visits and International Trade, CESifo Working Paper, no. 1582.

Pérez Castro, M. Á.; Montero Alonso, M. Á. & Santos Amaro, A. C. (2015) ‘The impact of the euro in the balance of trade (BOT): the Iberian case, Spain-Portugal,’ Coimbra Business Review, vol. 1, no. 1, December.

Rose, A. K. (2007), ‘The foreign service and foreign trade: embassies as export promotion,’ World Economy, vol. 30, no. 1, pp. 22-38. https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1467-9701.2007.00870.x

Singer, T. O. & Czinkota, M. R. (1994), ‘Factors associated with effective use of export assistance,’ Journal of International Marketing, vol. 2, no. 1, pp. 53-71.

The Slovak Spectator (2013), ‘Misia 14 wants SMEs to export more.’ Retrieved from http://spectator.sme.sk/c/20048356/misia-14-wants-smes-to-export-more.html [accessed May 2017]

Van Biesebroeck, J.; Konings, J. & Volpe Martincus, C. (2015), ‘Did export promotion help firms weather the crisis?’ Paper prepared for the 62nd Panel Meeting of Economic Policy, 16-17 October 2015.

Baltic Journal of European Studies

Tallinn Law School, Department of Law, School of Business and Governance, Tallinn University of Technology

Journal Information

CiteScore 2017: 0.50

SCImago Journal Rank (SJR) 2017: 0.199
Source Normalized Impact per Paper (SNIP) 2017: 0.223


All Time Past Year Past 30 Days
Abstract Views 0 0 0
Full Text Views 423 362 35
PDF Downloads 176 156 26