International Trade

Language as a barrier to entry: Foreign competition in Georgian public procurement

Provision of government contract information in English reduces the barriers to participation by foreign suppliers. We measure this effect using data from the country of Georgia, where English translations of government tenders were provided above specified contract size thresholds, which varied over time and across contract types. The provision of English documentation more than doubles foreign company participation for low value contracts, and leads to smaller, though still substantial, increases for higher value contracts. Because foreign bidder participation in Georgia is relatively small, the resulting impact on prices is in the order of only one percent.