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Beyond borders--Reconsidering regional trade in Central Asia

Listed author(s):
  • Grafe, Clemens
  • Raiser, Martin
  • Sakatsume, Toshiaki

This paper investigates the barriers to trade in Central Asia. While much of the existing literature on international integration of FSU countries has focused on the quantities traded, we use relative prices to shed some light on impediments to trade. We find that the impact of borders on price variations across different locations in Central Asia is much smaller than conventionally thought. While prices vary significantly across the region, variations within one country are just as large as variations across countries. We hypothesise (although we cannot prove) that this is due to obstacles to trade, and in particular rent seeking by enforcement agencies at the numerous internal check points. The paper also confirms that in relative terms, the borders with Uzbekistan are considerably more difficult to cross than those with Kazakhstan or the Kyrgyz Republic. Journal of Comparative Economics 36 (3) (2008) 453-466.

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File URL: http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0147-5967(08)00020-6
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Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Journal of Comparative Economics.

Volume (Year): 36 (2008)
Issue (Month): 3 (September)
Pages: 453-466

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Handle: RePEc:eee:jcecon:v:36:y:2008:i:3:p:453-466
Contact details of provider: Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/inca/622864

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  1. Yuriy Gorodnichenko & Linda Tesar, 2005. "A Re-Examination of the Border Effect," Working Papers 546, Research Seminar in International Economics, University of Michigan.
  2. Jan Fidrmuc & Jarko Fidrmuc, 2003. "Disintegration and Trade," Review of International Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 11(5), pages 811-829, November.
  3. James E. Anderson & Eric van Wincoop, 2004. "Trade Costs," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 42(3), pages 691-751, September.
  4. Engel, Charles & Rogers, John H, 1996. "How Wide Is the Border?," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 86(5), pages 1112-1125, December.
  5. James E. Anderson & Eric van Wincoop, 2003. "Gravity with Gravitas: A Solution to the Border Puzzle," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 93(1), pages 170-192, March.
  6. Lev Freinkman & Evgeny Polyakov & Carolina Revenco, 2004. "Trade Performance and Regional Integration of the CIS Countries," World Bank Publications, The World Bank, number 14933, April.
  7. McCallum, John, 1995. "National Borders Matter: Canada-U.S. Regional Trade Patterns," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 85(3), pages 615-623, June.
  8. Berkowitz, Daniel & DeJong, David N., 2003. "Regional integration: an empirical assessment of Russia," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 53(3), pages 541-559, May.
  9. Parsley, David C. & Wei, Shang-Jin, 2001. "Explaining the border effect: the role of exchange rate variability, shipping costs, and geography," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 55(1), pages 87-105, October.
  10. Mahbub Morshed, A. K. M., 2003. "What can we learn from a large border effect in developing countries?," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 72(1), pages 353-369, October.
  11. Betts, Caroline & Devereux, Michael B., 2000. "Exchange rate dynamics in a model of pricing-to-market," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 50(1), pages 215-244, February.
  12. John H. Rogers & Hayden P. Smith, 2001. "Border effects within the NAFTA countries," International Finance Discussion Papers 698, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
  13. Raballand, Gael & Kunth, Antoine & Auty, Richard, 2005. "Central Asia's transport cost burden and its impact on trade," Economic Systems, Elsevier, vol. 29(1), pages 6-31, March.
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