Determinants of Regional Growth by Manufacturing Sector in Mexico, 1988-2008
Isidro Soloaga and
Working Papers from Universidad Iberoamericana, Department of Economics
This article presents an empirical analysis aimed at identifying the determinants of regional growth in Mexico by manufacturing sector in the period 1988-2008. In the framework of agglomeration economies it argues that the main factor behind Mexico’s long-term regional industrial growth is Jacobs externalities (urbanization economies), and that wages are the main short-term factor behind this growth. There is heterogeneity in the determinants of regional growth according to technological intensity. Low-technology sectors appear to be more sensitive to initial wages and exhibit Jacobs externalities, while higher technology sectors show Porter economies (competition/specialization). Controlling for market conditions, agglomeration economies, and initial conditions, the south, the center and the Gulf of Mexico have a relative disadvantage for growth in medium-high-technology sectors. Moreover, only one out of the 58 Metropolitan Areas (MAs) studied shows a relative advantage for growth in this kind of industry. Relative advantage for low-technology sectors appears to be related to transportation and service infrastructure, while for high-technology sectors the main determinant is human capital.
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