Per-Capita Income as a Determinant of International Trade and Environmental Policies
AbstractInternational trade policy analysis has tended to focus on the production side of general equilibrium, with policies such as a tariff or carbon tax affecting international and internal income distributions through a Heckscher-Ohlin nexus of factor intensities and factor endowments. Here I move away from this structure to focus on demand, preferences, and endogenous policy in a trade/environment setting by assuming a high income elasticity of demand for environmental quality. I show how both non-cooperative and cooperative abatement policies in a two-country (rich and poor) setting are affected by non-homotheticity. I examine “issue linking” in international bargaining, in which one country is both large and rich, and hence has both a high tariff and a high abatement effort in a non-cooperative equilibrium. Several cooperative bargaining agreements are computed under alternative assumptions about linking or separating trade and environment negotiations. A final exercise considers “policy leakage”, in which one country has an incentive to reduce its optimal abatement effort when the other country increases its effort. The paper will also introduce many readers to a new solver in GAMS for a class of problems referred to as MPECs: mathematical programming with equilibrium constraints. This problem class has wide applications in economics, including solving for multiple optimal tax rates to provide public goods, redistribute income, internalize externalities, exploit monopoly power in trade and so forth, when the underlying general-equilibrium model is a set of constraints on the optimization problem.
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Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by Graduate School of Economics, Hitotsubashi University in its series Discussion Papers with number 2013-06.
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Date of creation: Oct 2012
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