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Has South Africa Liberalised Its Trade?

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  • LAWRENCE EDWARDS

Abstract

This paper uses new tariff data to re-evaluate the extent to which South Africa has liberalised its trade from the late 1980s. The paper finds that significant progress has been made in simplifying South Africa's tariff structure and reducing tariff protection, but further progress can be made in removing tariff peaks, reducing tariff dispersion, and lowering the anti-export bias arising from protection. Further, although protection has fallen, the decline has been no faster than in other lower-middle-income economies. The paper also finds that estimates of the level of nominal and effective protection, and their rate of change, are sensitive to the choice of tariff measure (collection duties or scheduled tariff rates) and Input-Output or Supply-Use table, but that the sectoral structure of protection is largely unaffected. Copyright 2005 Economic Society of South Africa.

Suggested Citation

  • Lawrence Edwards, 2005. "Has South Africa Liberalised Its Trade?," South African Journal of Economics, Economic Society of South Africa, vol. 73(4), pages 754-775, December.
  • Handle: RePEc:bla:sajeco:v:73:y:2005:i:4:p:754-775
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    Cited by:

    1. Fedderke, Johannes W. & Hill, Andrew J., 2011. "Industry structure and labor market flexibility in the South African manufacturing sector: A time series and panel data approach," Economic Modelling, Elsevier, vol. 28(3), pages 1291-1302, May.
    2. Fiandeiro, M. Fatima & Rankin, Neil A., 2008. "Trade liberalisation and wages in South African manufacturing," MPRA Paper 17066, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    3. Philippe Aghion & Matias Braun & Johannes Fedderke, 2008. "Competition and productivity growth in South Africa," The Economics of Transition, The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, vol. 16(4), pages 741-768, October.
    4. Brian McCaig & Margaret S. McMillan & Iñigo Verduzco-Gallo & Keith Jefferis, 2015. "Stuck in the Middle? Structural Change and Productivity Growth in Botswana," NBER Working Papers 21029, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    5. Lawrence Edwards & Marco Sanfilippo & Asha Sundaram, 2016. "Importing and firm performance New evidence from South Africa," WIDER Working Paper Series 039, World Institute for Development Economic Research (UNU-WIDER).
    6. Chad P. Bown, 2011. "The Great Recession and Import Protection : The Role of Temporary Trade Barriers," World Bank Publications, The World Bank, number 16359.
    7. Lawrence Edwards & Robert Z. Lawrence, 2006. "South African Trade Policy Matters: Trade Performance and Trade Policy," NBER Working Papers 12760, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    8. Janine Aron & John Muellbauer, 2009. "Monetary Policy and Inflation Modeling in a More Open Economy in South Africa," Chapters,in: Monetary Policy Frameworks for Emerging Markets, chapter 15 Edward Elgar Publishing.
    9. Edwards, Lawrence & Rankin, Neil A. & Schöer, Volker, 2008. "South African exporting firms: What do we know and what should we know?," MPRA Paper 16906, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    10. Torfinn Harding & Jørn Rattsø, 2009. "Industrial labor productivities and tariffs in South Africa. Identification based on multilateral liberalization reform," Discussion Papers 585, Statistics Norway, Research Department.
    11. Janine Aron & John Muellbauer, 2009. "Monetary Policy and Inflation Modeling in a More Open Economy in South Africa," Chapters, in: Monetary Policy Frameworks for Emerging Markets, chapter 15 Edward Elgar Publishing.

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