International Economics

How does the Heckscher-Ohlin theory differ from Ricardian theory in explaining international trade patterns?

In the Ricardian model only one factor of production, labor, is needed to produce goods and services (Suranovic). The productivity of labor is assumed to vary across countries, implying a difference in technology between nations. The difference in technology results in advantageous international trade. On the other hand, the Hecksher-Ohlin model uses two factors of production labor and capital (Carbaugh, 2004). Thus, this model accounts for differing factor-proportions both across and within industries. For example, if one country has a relative abundance of land while another country has a relative abundance of capital, the first country will have a comparative advantage in producing and exporting a land-intensive product while the second country would have a comparative advantage in a capital-intensive product.

The Heckscher-Ohlin theory demonstrates how trade affects the distribution of income within trading...
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