Regional Trade Agreements
AbstractThis paper reviews the theoretical and the empirical literature on regionalism. The formation of regional trade agreements has been, by far, the most popular form of reciprocal trade liberalization in the last fifteen years. The discriminatory character of these agreements has raised three main concerns: that trade diversion would be rampant, because special interest groups would induce governments to form the most distortionary agreements; that broader external trade liberalization would stall or reverse; and that multilateralism could be undermined. Theoretically, all of these concerns are legitimate, although there are also several theoretical arguments that oppose them. Empirically, neither widespread trade diversion nor stalled external liberalization have materialized, while the undermining of multilateralism has not been properly tested. There are also several aspects of regionalism that have received too little attention from researchers, but which are central to understanding its causes and consequences.
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Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by Centre for Economic Performance, LSE in its series CEP Discussion Papers with number dp0961.
Date of creation: Dec 2009
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regionalism; trade creation; trade diversion; external tariffs; trade liberalization;
Other versions of this item:
- F13 - International Economics - - Trade - - - Trade Policy; International Trade Organizations
- F15 - International Economics - - Trade - - - Economic Integration
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