IDEAS home Printed from
   My bibliography  Save this article

Why A Free Trade Area? The Tariff Also Rises




This paper considers the choice between a customs union (wherein partners share a common external tariff) and a free trade area (wherein each partner chooses its own tariff against non-members). Following the result that a customs union dominates a free trade area, with coordination of domestic tax policies, we show that a free trade area may nevertheless be chosen if tariffs are determined endogenously through industry lobbying. This is so even when the free trade area equates producer prices within its borders and induces tariff revenue competition and whether or not there is domestic free-riding in lobbying. Copyright 1994 Blackwell Publishers Ltd..

Suggested Citation

  • Martin Richardson, 1994. "Why A Free Trade Area? The Tariff Also Rises," Economics and Politics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 6(1), pages 79-96, March.
  • Handle: RePEc:bla:ecopol:v:6:y:1994:i:1:p:79-96

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL:
    File Function: link to full text
    Download Restriction: Access to full text is restricted to subscribers.

    As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to search for a different version of it.

    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Magee,Stephen P. & Brock,William A. & Young,Leslie, 1989. "Black Hole Tariffs and Endogenous Policy Theory," Cambridge Books, Cambridge University Press, number 9780521377003, March.
    2. Raymond Riezman & John Douglas Wilson, 2013. "Political Reform and Trade Policy," World Scientific Book Chapters,in: International Trade Agreements and Political Economy, chapter 13, pages 201-224 World Scientific Publishing Co. Pte. Ltd..
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)


    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.

    Cited by:

    1. Appelbaum, Elie & Melatos, Mark, 2012. "Camouflaged Trade Agreements," Working Papers 2012-11, University of Sydney, School of Economics.
    2. Panagariya, A., 1997. "Preferential trading and the myth of natural trading partners," Japan and the World Economy, Elsevier, vol. 9(4), pages 471-489, December.
    3. Facchini, Giovanni & Silva, Peri & Willmann, Gerald, 2013. "The customs union issue: Why do we observe so few of them?," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 90(1), pages 136-147.
    4. Richardson, Martin, 1995. "Tariff revenue competition in a free trade area," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 39(7), pages 1429-1437, August.
    5. Rafael Lima & Humberto Moreira & Thierry Verdier, 2008. "Lobbying and Information Transmission in Customs Unions," Working Papers 09_01, Universidade de São Paulo, Faculdade de Economia, Administração e Contabilidade de Ribeirão Preto.
    6. P. Magee, Stephen & Lee, Hak-Loh, 2001. "Endogenous tariff creation and tariff diversion in a customs union," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 45(3), pages 495-518, March.
    7. 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.

    More about this item


    Access and download statistics


    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:bla:ecopol:v:6:y:1994:i:1:p:79-96. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Wiley-Blackwell Digital Licensing) or (Christopher F. Baum). General contact details of provider: .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    We have no references for this item. You can help adding them by using this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.