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Comparative Advantage and the Location of Production


  • Rikard Forslid
  • Ian Wooton


The paper returns to a familiar topic in international trade, comparative advantage, introducing it into Krugman's classic, core-periphery model of economic geography. This extra force of dispersion radically changes the stability properties of the model. Instead of the familiar result that trade liberalization leads to increased industrial concentration, lowering trade costs leads initially to increased concentration and then to dispersion of production. When a pattern of comparative advantage exists, integration may lead to international specialization of production. This may be good news for peripheral countries, which may be able to retain industry despite the attraction of the core. Copyright Blackwell Publishing Ltd 2003.

Suggested Citation

  • Rikard Forslid & Ian Wooton, 2003. "Comparative Advantage and the Location of Production," Review of International Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 11(4), pages 588-603, September.
  • Handle: RePEc:bla:reviec:v:11:y:2003:i:4:p:588-603

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Ludema, Rodney D & Wooton, Ian, 1997. "Regional Integration, Trade, and Migration: Are Demand Linkages Relevant in Europe?," CEPR Discussion Papers 1656, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    2. Paul Krugman & Anthony J. Venables, 1995. "Globalization and the Inequality of Nations," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 110(4), pages 857-880.
    3. Venables, Anthony J, 1996. "Equilibrium Locations of Vertically Linked Industries," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 37(2), pages 341-359, May.
    4. Richard E. Baldwin, 1999. "The Core-Periphery Model with Forward-Looking Expectations," NBER Working Papers 6921, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    5. Masahisa Fujita & Paul Krugman & Anthony J. Venables, 2001. "The Spatial Economy: Cities, Regions, and International Trade," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 0262561476, July.
    6. Krugman, Paul, 1991. "Increasing Returns and Economic Geography," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 99(3), pages 483-499, June.
    7. Ludema, Rodney D. & Wooton, Ian, 2000. "Economic geography and the fiscal effects of regional integration," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 52(2), pages 331-357, December.
    8. repec:hhs:iuiwop:430 is not listed on IDEAS
    9. P Krugman & Anthony J. Venables, 1993. "Intergration," CEP Discussion Papers dp0172, Centre for Economic Performance, LSE.
    10. Gianmarco I. P. Ottaviano & Diego Puga, 1998. "Agglomeration in the Global Economy: A Survey of the 'New Economic Geography'," The World Economy, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 21(6), pages 707-731, August.
    11. Mary Amiti, 1998. "Will Labour Intensive Industries Always Locate in Labour Abundant Countries?," Working Papers 1998.02, School of Economics, La Trobe University.
    12. Krugman, Paul, 1993. "On the number and location of cities," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 37(2-3), pages 293-298, April.
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    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • F12 - International Economics - - Trade - - - Models of Trade with Imperfect Competition and Scale Economies; Fragmentation
    • F15 - International Economics - - Trade - - - Economic Integration
    • F22 - International Economics - - International Factor Movements and International Business - - - International Migration


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