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Resisting economic integration when industry location is uncertain

  • Gallo, Fredrik

This paper analyses the political determination of transportation costs in a new economic geography model. In a benchmark case with certainty about where agglomeration takes place, a majority of voters favour economic integration and the resulting equilibrium is an industrialised core and a de-industrialised periphery. Allowing for uncertainty, a high level of trade costs may win the election and maintain the initial distribution of industry. The reason is that a coalition of risk-averse immobile factors of production votes for the status quo due to uncertainty about which region will attract industry if economic integration is pursued. Finally, the standard view that agglomeration is unambiguously beneficial to residents in the industrial centre is challenged by introducing costs of undertaking economic integration.

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File URL: http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0014-2921(09)00088-9
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Article provided by Elsevier in its journal European Economic Review.

Volume (Year): 54 (2010)
Issue (Month): 3 (April)
Pages: 467-482

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Handle: RePEc:eee:eecrev:v:54:y:2010:i:3:p:467-482
Contact details of provider: Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/eer

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