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The Poverty Impacts of Global Commodity Trade Liberalization

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  • Hertel, Thomas W.
  • Keeney, Roman

Abstract

This paper examines the poverty impacts of global merchandise trade reform by looking at a wide range of developing countries in Africa, Asia and Latin America. Overall, we find that trade reform tends to reduce poverty primarily through the inclusion of agricultural components. The majority of our developing country sample experiences small poverty increases from non-agricultural reforms. We explore the relative poverty-friendliness of agricultural trade reforms in detail, examining the differential impacts on real after-tax factor returns of agricultural versus non-agricultural reforms. This analysis is extended to the distribution of households by looking at stratum-specific poverty changes. Our findings indicate that the more favorable impacts of agricultural reforms are driven by increased returns to peasant farm households’ labor as well as higher returns for unskilled wage labor. Finally, we examine the commodity-specific poverty impacts of trade reform for this sample of countries. We find that liberalization of food grains and other processed foods represent the largest contributions to poverty reduction. More specifically, it is tariff reform in these commodity markets that dominates the poverty increasing impacts of wealthy country subsidy removal.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by World Bank in its series Agricultural Distortions Working Paper with number 52786.

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Date of creation: Jun 2009
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Handle: RePEc:ags:wbadwp:52786

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Web page: http://www.worldbank.org
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Related research

Keywords: Distorted incentives; agricultural and trade policy reforms; national agricultural development; Agricultural and Food Policy; International Relations/Trade; F13; F14; Q17; Q18;

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References

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  1. W. Jill Harrison & K.R. Pearson, 1994. "Computing Solutions for Large General Equilibrium Models Using GEMPACK," Centre of Policy Studies/IMPACT Centre Working Papers ip-64, Victoria University, Centre of Policy Studies/IMPACT Centre.
  2. Gilbert,Christopher L. & Vines,David (ed.), 2006. "The World Bank," Cambridge Books, Cambridge University Press, number 9780521029018.
  3. Joseph Francois & Hans van Meijl & Frank van Tongeren, 2005. "Trade liberalization in the Doha Development Round," Economic Policy, CEPR;CES;MSH, vol. 20(42), pages 349-391, 04.
  4. Kym Anderson & Will Martin, 2009. "Distortions to Agricultural Incentives in Asia," World Bank Publications, The World Bank, number 2611, February.
  5. Valenzuela, Ernesto & Kym Anderson, 2009. "Alternative Agricultural Price Distortions for CGE Analysis of Developing Countries, 2004 and 1980-84," GTAP Research Memoranda 2925, Center for Global Trade Analysis, Department of Agricultural Economics, Purdue University.
  6. Anderson, Kym & Martin, Will & van der Mensbrugghe, Dominique, 2005. "Global impacts of Doha trade reform scenarios on poverty," Policy Research Working Paper Series 3735, The World Bank.
  7. Hertel, Thomas & Keeney, Roman & Ivanic, Maros & Winters, Alan, 2006. "Distributional Effects of WTO Agricultural Reforms in Rich and Poor Countries," GTAP Working Papers 2185, Center for Global Trade Analysis, Department of Agricultural Economics, Purdue University.
  8. de Janvry, Alain & Fafchamps, Marcel & Sadoulet, Elisabeth, 1991. "Peasant Household Behaviour with Missing Markets: Some Paradoxes Explained," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 101(409), pages 1400-417, November.
  9. W. Jill Harrison & J. Mark Horridge & K.R. Pearson, 1999. "Decomposing Simulation Results with Respect to Exogenous Shocks," Centre of Policy Studies/IMPACT Centre Working Papers ip-73, Victoria University, Centre of Policy Studies/IMPACT Centre.
  10. Thomas W. Hertel & Roman Keeney & Maros Ivanic & L. Alan Winters, 2009. "Why Isn't the Doha Development Agenda more Poverty Friendly?," Review of Development Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 13(4), pages 543-559, November.
  11. Keeney, Roman & Thomas Hertel, 2005. "GTAP-AGR : A Framework for Assessing the Implications of Multilateral Changes in Agricultural Policies," GTAP Technical Papers 1869, Center for Global Trade Analysis, Department of Agricultural Economics, Purdue University.
  12. Golub, Alla & W. Hertel, Thomas, 2008. "Global Economic Integration and Land Use Change," Journal of Economic Integration, Center for Economic Integration, Sejong University, vol. 23, pages 463-488.
  13. Cranfield, J. A. L. & Preckel, Paul V. & Eales, James S. & Hertel, Thomas W., 2002. "Estimating consumer demands across the development spectrum: maximum likelihood estimates of an implicit direct additivity model," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 68(2), pages 289-307, August.
  14. Thomas W. Hertel & Maros Ivanic & Paul V. Preckel & John A. L. Cranfield, 2004. "The Earnings Effects of Multilateral Trade Liberalization: Implications for Poverty," World Bank Economic Review, World Bank Group, vol. 18(2), pages 205-236.
  15. Valenzuela, Ernesto & Wong, Sara & Sandri, Damiano, 2007. "Distortions to Agricultural Incentives in Ecuador," Agricultural Distortions Working Paper 48394, World Bank.
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Cited by:
  1. Douillet, Mathilde, 2012. "Trade policies and agricultural exports of Sub-Saharan African countries: Some stylized facts and perspectives," MPRA Paper 40962, University Library of Munich, Germany.

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