The issue of export instability exerts an enduring fascination for economists with an interest in the area of economic development. Over several decades a voluminous literature has emerged embracing debates on the domestic consequences and on the causes of export instability. The purpose here is to examine these debates and an attempt is made to set out different theoretical stances, to classify and examine empirical findings, and to indicate the directions in which the debates have moved. Such a statement of a review article's purpose is, of course, incomplete without more specific delineation of the boundaries within which the general objectives are pursued. Here that delineation has three facets.
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