Exemptions from employers’ social security contributions are by far the most important item of business subsidies. Although their direct influence on job creation, which is their primary objective, has been the subject of numerous evaluations, few researches propose to estimate their influence on competitiveness. This article sheds light on the subject by addressing the issue considering the ability of firms to access external markets through exports. To this end, this article proposes an empirical analysis of the determinants of the probability of exporting, the frequency of exports and their intensity resting on micro data for a sample French manufacturing companies over the 2004-2011 period. Our results highlight a negative effect of the exemptions on companies’ export commitment. It is confirmed regardless of the indicator, period and sector selected.