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  • Subject area(s): Engineering
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  • Published on: 7th September 2019
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1.1. Background of the Study

Performance is an indispensable guide for any company analyzing its level of success, both in domestic and international grounds. Assessing export performance is a complex task, its usefulness depending on the credibility of the measures (i.e., financial and non-financial) and on the ways in which one measures (i.e., objective and subjective terms) (Luis F., 2000). Indeed, dealing with this variable may become very complicated because export performance can be conceptualized and operational zed in many ways (Das, 1994; Diamantopoulos and Schlegelmilch, 1994., cited by Luis F., 2000). The two principal modes for looking at export performance involve the use of financial and non-financial measures (Zou and Stan, 1998).In contrast to non-financial variables are commonly used at the international level(Das,1994;Evangelista,1994). The most common variables which are perceived as determinants for export are international trade laws and regulations, regional trade organization laws and regulations, and the import regulations of individual countries as external factors and government policies, level of industrial development, the incentives structure, the export support services, and firm specific services like skill composition, personnel and engineering management as domestic factors (Zou and Cavusgil, 1994).

According to Yishak (2009) supply side conditions such as internal transport, infrastructure and institutional quality are found to be statistically significant and affect Ethiopian exports positively; where as FDI and real exchange rate are found to be statistically insignificant for the performance of export. Beleska-Spasova (2014) argue that data availability and accessibility, Firm characteristics (size, export experience), Unit/level of assessment, Time frame of assessment (short-term vs. long-term), Strategic objectives, Position of the assessor in the firm (SBU manager, export manager, financial manager, general manager, etc.) are the major determinants of export performance. Some other researchers like Yenieguad E. (2010) on his study of the determinants for the performance of horse beans export argue that knowledge, government support service, quality of the product significantly deters the export performance.Abraraw A. (2013) on his study of the determinants for performance of sesame seed have tried to see various determinant factors i.e. real output and nominal exchange rate.

From the above studies some of them are studied in other countries outside Ethiopia. While others are studied in Ethiopian case. Therefore, the researcher assumed that as the level of development among countries andthe type of variables differ, the degree to which variables influence over export performance is also differ from country to country, from place to place and even from item to another item. In addition to this, amongstudies which are studied in Ethiopia are mainly revolving in different agricultural products like coffee, pulses and oilseeds only.Therefore, to my knowledge there is no any study done previously on the determinants for the performance of cattle export specifically in the route of Metema-Gelabat cross border. Due to this the researcher initiated to assess the determinants of cattle export via Metema- Gelabat cross border.

1.2. Statement of the problem

By most accounts, African countries have not made significant progress in boosting regional trade. Over the period from 2007 to 2011, the average share of intra-African exports in total merchandise exports in Africa was 11% compared with 50% in developing Asia, 21% in Latin America and the Caribbean 70 % in Europe. Furthermore, available evidence indicates that the continent's actual level of trade is also below potential, given its level of development and factor endowments (UNCTAD, 2013).There are several reasons for the weak trade performance in Africa.Extreme volatility of primary commodity prices, high external trade dependence, low world share, declining terms of trade, excessive export earnings variability and falling export revenues,deep rooted structural problems, weak policy frameworks and institutions, protection at home and abroad (IMF and World Bank, 2001); and the structure of African exports, which is characterized by dependence on primary commodities (Alemayehu, 2006, Biggs, 2007; UNCTAD, 2008) are considered as the reasons for Africa's poor export performance.

Like other African countries, Ethiopia has also faced these problems for a long period of time. According to World Bank (2009), the share of Ethiopia's manufactures export in the total export is only 9.0 percent (implying primary agricultural commodity to be 91 percent) while that of china is 94percent.The export structure of Ethiopia has been characterized by greater concentrationon few traditional exports such as coffee, hides and skins and oilseeds and pulses for the last 41 years (Anagaw B.k., &Demissie, W.M., 2012).Ethiopia has Africa's largest livestock population with estimated 52 million cattle, 36 million sheep, 35 million goats and 5 million camels in (CSA, 2009).This shows Ethiopia has great potential for increased livestock production, both for local use and for export. But its share in total world export is still very low compared with other African countries amounting 0.01% in (WTO, 2007).As a region Amhara is also one of the most potentialregions in in its livestock resource next to Oromiya (Elias M. et al., 2007).

Most of cattle exporters found in Amhara and Tigray regions use Metema-Gelabat cross border to export their cattle's to Sudan. As Ethiopian revenues and customs Authority (2013) Bahirdar branch annual report shows the total sales volume of cattle's during the year was 2,023 heads by explaining the presence of  considerable reduction in amount of cattle export to Sudan port from year to year. In response to this problem, the study needs to identifying and examining factors that significantly affect export performance which mayprovide vital  information to the government  and to take remedial actions   for the design of polices to improve the performance of cattle export and ultimately for overall economic growth.

Hence, the study aimed to examine what factors influencing cattle export performance via Metema-Gelabat cross border.

1.3. Objective of The study

1.3.1. General Objective

The main objective of the study was toexamine the determinants for Performance of Ethiopian cattle export to Sudan in the case of Metema 'Gelabat cross border.

1.3.2. Specific Objectives

1. To examine the performance of cattle export trade. .

2. To investigate how Knowledge affect cattle export performance

3. To investigate how Experience affect cattle export performance

4. To investigate how government support service affect cattle export performance

5. To investigate how domestic infrastructure affect cattle export performance.

6. To measure how financial accessibility affect cattle export performance.

7. To identify other key constraints and challenges

1.4. Research Hypotheses

The following hypotheses were framed based on the review of literatures and preliminary discussions made with experts and officials in the sector.

' H1n: There is a significant positive relation between knowledge of exporters on export trading and export  performance

' H2n: There is positive significant relation between domestic transport infrastructure and export performance

' H3n:There is significant positive relation between support services of the government provided to exporters and export performance

' H4n: There is negative relation between experience of exporters on exporting and international trade and export performance

' H5n: There is a significant positive relation between Capital of exporters and export performance

1.5. Significance of the Study

Cattle export is one of the main contributors of the economy. The researcher assumes that the study will have the following significance;

' For the government and stakeholders; identifying the major constraints of cattle export performance of Ethiopia and to take their own remedial actions so as to promote export growth.

' For Exporters;it will have an important role in broadening the knowledge and awareness of exporters throughannouncing the major constraint which hinder their activity to escape from such constraints and to take their own internal decisions and it enhances their performance and competitiveness'.

' For Researchers; it may serve as bench mark to conduct further research on this area.

' For others; to provide information about the current performance of Ethio-Sudan cross border cattle trade and factor affecting it.

1.6. Scope of the study

According to Metema customs center 2013 annual report, various exporters export to Sudan above 28 agricultural items like pulses, processed and semi-processed spices and live animals especially cattle's via Metema-Gelabat route. Due to this it was very difficult to cover the overall performance of all export items because of lack of consistent data, time and other financial constraints .So this study is delimited in analyzing only the determinants for the performance of cattle exports by considering abundant potential of Ethiopian cattle and its economic importance.

There are several factorswhich needs to be studied in Ethiopia in order to put remedial future actions. But it is too difficult to address those all factors related to export performance. Thoughby taking into consideration in the context of the study area (Metema-Gelabat cross border) using the researcher prior knowledge, this study tried to see only some variables which are supposed to be crucial in determining cattle export performance such as exporters financial resources, experience on export trading, knowledge, government support services, anddomestic transport infrastructure to assess whether those factors deter or not. The study has tried to measurethe performance of cattle export from the period from July 2014 up to June 2015 using cross-sectional data.

1.7. Limitation of the study

The major limitations for this study were the following;

' Lack of consistent and organized data on the area of the study

' Inaccessibility of previous related literatures

' Those Cattle exporters which use the route of Metema-gelabat border were sparsely located acrossdifferent zones, woredas and kebeles in Amhara region. Thus they do not have known and specific address where they alive. As a result   it was very difficult to get them and to distribute the questionnaire easily and to collect back their responses after distribution so as to get primary data. .

' The information which was provided by Ministry of trade and transport Bahirdar branch was notclearly shows active and passive cattle exporters. Though knowing the total population to draw the appropriate sample size was very challenging. After extensive cross checking the profile of traders between Ethiopian revenues and customs authority and Ministry of trade the correct status of exporters and their exact figure was found using Assycuda++(Automated system for custom data)software.

' Problems related to the number of variables since there may exist other variables not included in this study but which may affect export performance wasalso another major obstacles in preparing this paper.

To tackle those limitations particularly on secondary data the researcher employed his maximum effort to get consistent and reliable data by extensive browsing internets, by searching annual and monthly reports of ERCA. While for primary data, validity and reliability measures were taken so as to strengthen the data collected from sample respondents using pretest before distributing the actual survey questionnaire. In addition to this, fully participated during data collection time in order to increase the rate of responses of respondents.

1.8. Organization of the study

The research is contains five chapters. The first chapter provides broad introduction about background and rationale of the study, statements of the problems, hypothesis, objectives, scope and limitations, and significance of the study.

Chapter  two provides  aboutdefinitions and theoretical Concepts of Export and Export performance, theoretical as well as empirical  literatures  related  to  the  topic  focusing  on  the  concepts  of  export performance, its measurements and determinants, and performance and challenges of Ethiopian exports.

Chapter three includes study design, population and sample, sample size determination, sample selection techniques, research instruments, and methods of analysis.  In the fourth chapter, findings of the research and their interpretations of results are discussed. Chapter five concludes the study with an overview of implications and recommends.

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