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Agricultural Trade Policy Analysis And International Trade Theory: A Review Of Recent Developments

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  • D. MacLaren

Abstract

The aim of this review is to determine the extent to which specific recent developments in international trade theory can help to provide fresh insights into how agricultural protectionism might better be analysed. The particular extensions reviewed with respect to their commercial policy implications are: differentiated products; oligopolistic international markets; risk, uncertainty and imperfect information; and the addition of political variables to provide a framework of political economy. In each case the supremacy of free trade as the optimal trade policy choice is weakened. The nature of the optimal trade policy depends on the particular set of assumptions made and on detailed empirical information. In practice such information may be too costly and difficult to obtain, thereby rendering the pursuit of optimal trade policies impracticable. However, by making the political process endogenous and by taking account of income risk, a better description of reality is obtained, one that explains why the advice of economists about the choice of trade policy instruments has been ignored so often by the agricultural policy process.

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  • D. MacLaren, 1991. "Agricultural Trade Policy Analysis And International Trade Theory: A Review Of Recent Developments," Journal of Agricultural Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 42(3), pages 250-297, September.
  • Handle: RePEc:bla:jageco:v:42:y:1991:i:3:p:250-297
    DOI: 10.1111/j.1477-9552.1991.tb00355.x
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    File URL: https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1477-9552.1991.tb00355.x
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    2. von Cramon-Taubadel, Stephan, 1992. "A critical assessment of the political preference function approach in agricultural economics," Agricultural Economics, Blackwell, vol. 7(3-4), pages 371-394, October.
    3. Carl GAIGNÉ & Cathie LAROCHE DUPRAZ & Alan MATTHEWS, 2015. "Thirty years of European research on international trade in food and agricultural products," Review of Agricultural and Environmental Studies - Revue d'Etudes en Agriculture et Environnement, INRA Department of Economics, vol. 96(1), pages 91-130.
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    5. Vink, N., 1992. "Expanding The Playing Field: South Africa, Southern Africa And The Role Of The Agricultural Economist," Agrekon, Agricultural Economics Association of South Africa (AEASA), vol. 31(4), December.
    6. Jonathan Brooks, 1996. "Agricultural Policies In Oecd Countries: What Can We Learn From Political Economy Models?," Journal of Agricultural Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 47(1‐4), pages 366-389, January.
    7. Johan F.M.Swinnen & Alessandro Olper & Thijs Vandemoortele, 2011. "The Political Economy of Policy Instrument Choice: Theory and Evidence from Agricultural Policies," LICOS Discussion Papers 27911, LICOS - Centre for Institutions and Economic Performance, KU Leuven.
    8. van Berkum, Siemen & van Meijl, Hans, 2000. "The application of trade and growth theories to agriculture: a survey," Australian Journal of Agricultural and Resource Economics, Australian Agricultural and Resource Economics Society, vol. 44(4), pages 1-38.
    9. Field, Heather, 1992. "EPU, EC Policy Determination, and Cap Reform," 1992 Conference (36th), February 10-13, 1992, Canberra, Australia 146495, Australian Agricultural and Resource Economics Society.
    10. Michael Hubbard, 1997. "The ‘New Institutional Economics’ In Agricultural Development: Insights And Challenges," Journal of Agricultural Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 48(1‐3), pages 239-249, January.

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