Applied Micro Seminar - Brian McCaig (Wilfrid Laurier)

Applied Microeconomics Seminar Series

Title: Export Expansion and Investment in Children’s Human Capital: Evidence from the U.S.-Vietnam Bilateral Trade Agreement

Abstract: We examine how export expansion induced by the U.S-Vietnam Bilateral Trade Agreement (BTA) affected migration, school enrollment, and work among adolescents and youth in Vietnam. We exploit variation in U.S. tariff reductions across industries associated with the BTA and differences in industry employment shares across Vietnamese provinces prior to the policy change. We find that the BTA led to migration to the most affected provinces, particularly by adolescents (15 to 18) and youth (19 to 29). The migration response led to differential effects on work and school between migrants and non-migrants. Basing exposure to the U.S. tariff reductions on the individual’s province before migrating suggests the U.S. tariff reductions led to an increase in enrolment and a decrease in working among Vietnamese adolescents and youth.