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Regionalism and trade facilitation : a primer

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  • Maur, Jean-Christophe

Abstract

This paper investigates when trade facilitation reform should be undertaken at the regional level. First, looking at both efficiency and implementation considerations, it confirms the perception that the regional dimension matters. Investigating where efficiency gains can be made, this research explains why national markets alone fail to produce the full scale economies and positive externalities of trade facilitation reform. Second, because trade facilitation policies need to address coordination and capacity failures, and because of the operational complexity challenge, the choice of the adequate platform for delivering reform is crucial. The lessons are that regional trade agreements offer good prospects of comprehensive and effective reform and can effectively complement multilateral and national initiatives. However, examples of implementation of trade facilitation reform in regional agreements do not seem to indicate that regional integration approaches have been more successful than trade facilitation through specific cooperation agreements or other efforts, multilateral or unilateral. Customs unions may be an exception here, and the author suggests reasons why this could be the case.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by The World Bank in its series Policy Research Working Paper Series with number 4464.

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Date of creation: 01 Jan 2008
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Handle: RePEc:wbk:wbrwps:4464

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Keywords: Transport Economics Policy&Planning; Trade Law; Trade and Regional Integration; Free Trade; Trade Policy;

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References

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  1. Mattoo, Aaditya & Fink, Carsten, 2002. "Regional agreements and trade services - policy issues," Policy Research Working Paper Series 2852, The World Bank.
  2. Jack Hirshleifer, 1983. "From weakest-link to best-shot: The voluntary provision of public goods," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 41(3), pages 371-386, January.
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  4. Schiff, Maurice & Winters, L. Alan, 2002. "Regional cooperation, and the role of international organizations and regional integration," Policy Research Working Paper Series 2872, The World Bank.
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  8. Schiff, Maurice & Winters, L. Alan, 1997. "Regional integration as diplomacy," Policy Research Working Paper Series 1801, The World Bank.
  9. Jean-Christophe Maur, 2005. "Exporting Europe's Trade Policy," The World Economy, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 28(11), pages 1565-1590, November.
  10. Tarik Yousef & Hassan Al-Atrash, 2000. "Intra-Arab Trade," IMF Working Papers 00/10, International Monetary Fund.
  11. Tsunehiro Otsuki & John S. Wilson, 2001. "What price precaution? European harmonisation of aflatoxin regulations and African groundnut exports," European Review of Agricultural Economics, Foundation for the European Review of Agricultural Economics, vol. 28(3), pages 263-284, October.
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  13. Sauve, Pierre & Zampetti, Americo Beviglia, 2000. "Subsidiarity Perspectives on the New Trade Agenda," Journal of International Economic Law, Oxford University Press, vol. 3(1), pages 83-114, March.
  14. James E. Anderson & Eric van Wincoop, 2001. "Borders, Trade and Welfare," Boston College Working Papers in Economics 508, Boston College Department of Economics.
  15. Todd Sandler, 2006. "Regional public goods and international organizations," The Review of International Organizations, Springer, vol. 1(1), pages 5-25, March.
  16. Arvis, Jean-Francois & Raballand, Gael & Marteau, Jean-Francois, 2007. "The cost of being landlocked : logistics costs and supply chain reliability," Policy Research Working Paper Series 4258, The World Bank.
  17. Schiff, Maurice, 2001. "Will the Real “Natural Trading Partner” Please Stand Up?," Journal of Economic Integration, Center for Economic Integration, Sejong University, vol. 16, pages 245-261.
  18. Todd Sandler, 1998. "Global and regional public goods: a prognosis for collective action," Fiscal Studies, Institute for Fiscal Studies, vol. 19(3), pages 221-247, August.
  19. Kanbur, Ravi & Sandler, Todd & Morrison, Kevin, 1999. "The Future of Development Assistance: Common Pools and International Public Goods," Staff General Research Papers 1629, Iowa State University, Department of Economics.
  20. Baldwin, Richard, 2000. "Regulatory Protectionism, Developing Nations and a Two-Tier World Trade System," CEPR Discussion Papers 2574, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  21. Maurice Schiff & L. Alan Winters, 2003. "Regional Integration and Development," World Bank Publications, The World Bank, number 15172, October.
  22. Luc De Wulf & José B. Sokol, 2005. "Customs Modernization Handbook," World Bank Publications, The World Bank, number 7216, October.
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Citations

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Cited by:
  1. Douglas H. Brooks, 2010. "Regional Cooperation, Infrastructure, and Trade Costs in Asia," Working Papers id:3090, eSocialSciences.
  2. 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.
  3. Chauffour, Jean-Pierre & Maur, Jean-Christophe, 2010. "Beyond market access : the new normal of preferential trade agreements," Policy Research Working Paper Series 5454, The World Bank.

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