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North, South and distance in the gravity model

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  • Melitz, Jacques

Abstract

It is generally assumed that distance in the gravity model strictly reflects frictions impeding bilateral trade. However, distances North-South could also reflect differences in factor endowment that provide opportunities for profitable trade. This paper investigates the hypothesis that if we control for distance in the ordinary sense, differences North-South promote international trade. The hypothesis receives ample support. Moreover, the significance of differences North-South survives a battery of robustness tests, concerning period, distinctions between differences in latitude North-North, North-South and South-South, and controls for other measures of differences in factor endowment, such as differences in per capita output and differences in average temperature, rainfall, and seasonal range in temperature. The impact of differences North-South on bilateral trade has also been falling. This decline, in turn, might be partly responsible for the weakening of the influence of distance that has been occurring since World War II. This last hypothesis receives confirmation as well. Finally, the paper studies two country-specific aspects of distance: internal distance and remoteness. It does so by examining the impact of both on the country fixed effects themselves: that is, those that emerged earlier. Internal distance turns out to have a far greater impact than remoteness – by an order of ten.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Elsevier in its journal European Economic Review.

Volume (Year): 51 (2007)
Issue (Month): 4 (May)
Pages: 971-991

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Handle: RePEc:eee:eecrev:v:51:y:2007:i:4:p:971-991

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References

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  1. Barry Eichengreen & Douglas A. Irwin, 1996. "The Role of History in Bilateral Trade Flows," NBER Working Papers 5565, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Jacques Melitz, 2003. "Language and Foreign Trade," Working Papers 2003-26, Centre de Recherche en Economie et Statistique.
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  10. Rikhil Bhavnani & Natalia T. Tamirisa & Arvind Subramanian & David T. Coe, 2002. "The Missing Globalization Puzzle," IMF Working Papers 02/171, International Monetary Fund.
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  18. Hummels, David, 1999. "Toward a Geography of Trade Costs," GTAP Working Papers 1162, Center for Global Trade Analysis, Department of Agricultural Economics, Purdue University.
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Citations

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Cited by:
  1. Jaime MELO DE & Céline CARRERE & John WILSON, 2009. "The Distance Effect and the Regionalization of the Trade of Low-Income Countries," Working Papers 200908, CERDI.
  2. Michele Fratianni & Francesco Marchionne, 2009. "The Limits to Integration," Mo.Fi.R. Working Papers 20, Money and Finance Research group (Mo.Fi.R.) - Univ. Politecnica Marche - Dept. Economic and Social Sciences.
  3. Regolo, Julie, 2013. "Export diversification: How much does the choice of the trading partner matter?," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 91(2), pages 329-342.
  4. Jamie Partridge & Hartley Furtan, 2008. "Immigration Wave Effects on Canada's Trade Flows," Canadian Public Policy, University of Toronto Press, vol. 34(2), pages 193-214, June.
  5. repec:gen:geneem:13032 is not listed on IDEAS
  6. Cardamone, Paola, 2007. "A Survey of the Assessments of the Effectiveness of Preferential Trade Agreements using Gravity Models," Economia Internazionale / International Economics, Camera di Commercio di Genova, vol. 60(4), pages 421-473.
  7. Correia Leite João, 2008. "The Determinants of Colombian Exports: An Empirical Analysis Using the Gravity Model," REVISTA DESARROLLO Y SOCIEDAD, UNIVERSIDAD DE LOS ANDES-CEDE.
  8. Richard Frensch, 2008. "Trade liberalisation, adoption costs, and import margins in CEEC and OECD trade," Working Papers 269, Institut für Ost- und Südosteuropaforschung (Institute for East and South-East European Studies).
  9. Pauline Grosjean & Claudia Senik, 2011. "Democracy, Market Liberalization, and Political Preferences," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 93(1), pages 365-381, February.
  10. Kokko, Ari & Gustavsson Tingvall, Patrik, 2012. "The Eurovision Song Contest, Preferences and European Trade," Ratio Working Papers 183, The Ratio Institute.
  11. Zhang, Yahua & Findlay, Christopher, 2014. "Air transport policy and its impacts on passenger traffic and tourist flows," Journal of Air Transport Management, Elsevier, vol. 34(C), pages 42-48.
  12. Julie Regolo, 2013. "Export Diversification: How Much Does the Choice of the Trading Partner Matter?," Research Papers by the Department of Economics, University of Geneva 13072, Département des Sciences Économiques, Université de Genève.
  13. Luljeta Hajderllari & Kostas Karantininis & Lartey G. Lawson, 2012. "FDI as an Export-Platform: A Gravity Model for the Danish Agri-Food Industry," IFRO Working Paper 2012/7, University of Copenhagen, Department of Food and Resource Economics.
  14. Julia Spies & Helena Marques, 2006. "Trade Effects of the Europe Agreements," Diskussionspapiere aus dem Institut für Volkswirtschaftslehre der Universität Hohenheim 274/2006, Department of Economics, University of Hohenheim, Germany.
  15. N. Holinski & C.J.M. Kool & J. Muysken, 2011. "The Impact of International Portfolio Composition on Consumption Risk Sharing," Working Papers 11-20, Utrecht School of Economics.
  16. de santis, roberta, 2011. "Impact of environmental regulations on trade in the main EU countries: conflict or synergy?," MPRA Paper 37756, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  17. Martina Lawless, 2010. "Geography and firm exports: new evidence on the nature of sunk costs," Review of World Economics (Weltwirtschaftliches Archiv), Springer, vol. 146(4), pages 691-707, December.

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