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National Politics and International Agreements

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  • Hubert Kempf

    ()
    (CES - Centre d'économie de la Sorbonne - CNRS : UMR8174 - Université Paris I - Panthéon-Sorbonne, EEP-PSE - Ecole d'Économie de Paris - Paris School of Economics - Ecole d'Économie de Paris, Banque de France - Direction de la Recherche)

  • Stéphane Rossignol

    ()
    (CES - Centre d'économie de la Sorbonne - CNRS : UMR8174 - Université Paris I - Panthéon-Sorbonne, LIRAES - Université Paris V - Paris Descartes)

Abstract

International agreements about transnational issues are difficult to reach, as the examples of the Copenhagen summit or the never-ending discussions of the future of the European Union make clear. In this paper, we relate this difficulty to the political process and the conflicts of interest attached to an agreement, both within and between national electorates, related to national income distributions. We set up a political economy model of a two-country world economy, where an international agreement on the financing of an international public good has to be negociated by two elected national delegates. We prove that any international agreement involves higher taxes in both countries than in the case of no-agreement. If reachable, an IA may generate losers in either country. If the political process involves a constraint on tax rates, an agreement may or may not be reached. Finally, when an agreement is reached, it may exhibit strategic delegation when the median voters are the Condorcet winners in both countries : this delegation is the outcome of the struggle by electorates to transfer the tax burden to the other country's taxpayers. In brief, the fate of an international agreements depends on national politics and distributive issues in the involved countries.

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Paper provided by HAL in its series Université Paris1 Panthéon-Sorbonne (Post-Print and Working Papers) with number halshs-00497463.

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Date of creation: Jun 2010
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Handle: RePEc:hal:cesptp:halshs-00497463

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Keywords: International agreements; bargaining; delegation; voting.;

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References

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  1. Grégoire ROTA-GRAZIOSI, 2006. "On the strategic use of representative democracy in international agreements," Working Papers 200624, CERDI.
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  3. Lange, Andreas & Vogt, Carsten, 2003. "Cooperation in international environmental negotiations due to a preference for equity," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 87(9-10), pages 2049-2067, September.
  4. Besley, Timothy & Coate, Stephen, 2003. "Centralized versus decentralized provision of local public goods: a political economy approach," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 87(12), pages 2611-2637, December.
  5. Alesina, Alberto F & Angeloni, Ignazio & Etro, Federico, 2003. "International Unions," CEPR Discussion Papers 3913, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  6. Leo Wangler & JJuan-Carlos Altamirano-Cabrera & Hans-Peter Weikard, 2011. "The Political Economy of International Environmental Agreements: A Survey," Jena Economic Research Papers 2011-038, Friedrich-Schiller-University Jena, Max-Planck-Institute of Economics.
  7. Hubert Kempf & Stéphane Rossignol, 2005. "Is Inequality Harmful for the Environment in a Growing Economy?," Working Papers 2005.5, Fondazione Eni Enrico Mattei.
  8. Paola Conconi & Nicolas Sahuguet, 2009. "Policymakers' Horizon and the Sustainability of International Cooperation," ULB Institutional Repository 2013/98547, ULB -- Universite Libre de Bruxelles.
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  14. Lange, Andreas & Vogt, Carsten & Ziegler, Andreas, 2006. "On the Importance of Equity in International Climate Policy: An Empirical Analysis," ZEW Discussion Papers 06-42, ZEW - Zentrum für Europäische Wirtschaftsforschung / Center for European Economic Research.
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  18. Thomson, William, 1994. "Cooperative models of bargaining," Handbook of Game Theory with Economic Applications, in: R.J. Aumann & S. Hart (ed.), Handbook of Game Theory with Economic Applications, edition 1, volume 2, chapter 35, pages 1237-1284 Elsevier.
  19. Kyle Bagwell & Robert W. Staiger, 2004. "The Economics of the World Trading System," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 0262524341, December.
  20. Lasse Ringius & Asbjørn Torvanger & Arild Underdal, 2002. "Burden Sharing and Fairness Principles in International Climate Policy," International Environmental Agreements: Politics, Law and Economics, Springer, vol. 2(1), pages 1-22, March.
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Cited by:
  1. Leo Wangler & Juan-Carlos Altamirano-Cabrera & Hans-Peter Weikard, 2013. "The political economy of international environmental agreements: a survey," International Environmental Agreements: Politics, Law and Economics, Springer, vol. 13(3), pages 387-403, September.

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