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Who Supports Free Trade in Latin America?

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  • Eugene Beaulieu
  • Ravindra A. Yatawara
  • Wei Guo Wang

Abstract

This paper examines individual trade policy preferences across 17 countries in Latin America. The focus is on whether skilled or unskilled workers are more likely to support liberalised trade and on whether country characteristics, such as factor endowments, alter the preferences of skilled and unskilled workers. Based on the standard Heckscher-Ohlin model and the Stolper-Samuelson theorem, wage inequality in developing countries will decrease under free trade and unskilled workers will benefit. We find that on average skilled workers are more likely than unskilled workers to support free trade in Latin American countries. Separate country regressions reveal that this pattern is only statistically significant in 8 out of 17 Latin American countries. However, there are no countries in our sample in which unskilled workers are statistically more likely to support free trade than skilled workers, not even in the lowest skill-endowed country in the sample. We also find that people from Latin American countries with higher GDP, faster growth, more cropland and a longer period of time since reform were more likely on average to support free trade. Copyright Blackwell Publishing Ltd 2005.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Wiley Blackwell in its journal The World Economy.

Volume (Year): 28 (2005)
Issue (Month): 7 (07)
Pages: 941-958

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Handle: RePEc:bla:worlde:v:28:y:2005:i:7:p:941-958

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Cited by:
  1. Jäkel, Ina C. & Smolka, Marcel, 2011. "Individual attitudes towards trade: Stolper-Samuelson revisited," University of Tuebingen Working Papers in Economics and Finance 11, University of Tuebingen, Faculty of Economics and Social Sciences.
  2. Natalia Melgar & Juliette Milgram & Máximo Rossi, 2009. "The role of macroeconomic performance in individual’s attitudes towards protectionism," Documentos de Trabajo (working papers) 0809, Department of Economics - dECON.
  3. Jeffrey Drope & Abdur Chowdhury, 2014. "Economic (In)Security and Gender Differences in Trade Policy Attitudes," William Davidson Institute Working Papers Series wp1067, William Davidson Institute at the University of Michigan.

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