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Human Capital and Export Decisions: The Case of Small and Medium Enterprises in Kosovo

Petrit Gashi orcid id ; Faculty of Economics, University of Prishtina, Kosovo

Puni tekst: engleski pdf 426 Kb

str. 91-120

preuzimanja: 1.403



Following the propositions of firm internationalization theories including the Melit’z dynamic model of export participation, this paper investigates the effects of human capital on the export decisions of Kosovo’s firms. Using a unique dataset of around 500 Small and Medium Enterprises, econometric estimates show mixed indications regarding the relationship between the propensity to export and longevity in export markets and human capital variables, measured by the education of the workforce, and investment in training. While education generally has a negative effect on exporting decisions, the latter shows a consistent positive effect. In the context of Kosovo, this dichotomy may reflect in part the effect of the underperforming education system in Kosovo, which does not produce the right level and/or mix of skills required by the private sector; this, in turn, forces SMEs to invest in increasing workforce capacities. Another explanation may indicate the lack of demand for a better skilled workforce, either because of associated high costs, or because a significant number of firms in Kosovo operate in low-value activities that do not require advanced skills and knowledge. Other factors that affect the decisions of firms to enter and serve export markets are found to be firm size, experience, growth, and adoption of quality standards.

Ključne riječi

Kosovo, export decisions, human capital, productivity

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