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Ambiguous protection

Author

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  • Gründler, Klaus
  • Hillman, Arye L.

Abstract

Import regulations are globally the most prevalent form of intervention in international trade. The regulations should, under rules of the WTO, protect consumers and the environment but can be used to protect producers. We investigate the ambiguity of intent of the regulations. We set out a model that when applied empirically suggests, as a benchmark estimate, equal divide between social benefit and producer protection. Inefficiency and distributional effects of the regulations are consistent with producer-protecting trade policy. Country diversity in use of regulations supplements our estimates in suggesting presence of producer-protecting intent. We look at how WTO procedures have allowed producer protection in the guise of social benefit.

Suggested Citation

  • Gründler, Klaus & Hillman, Arye L., 2021. "Ambiguous protection," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 68(C).
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:poleco:v:68:y:2021:i:c:s0176268021000100
    DOI: 10.1016/j.ejpoleco.2021.102009
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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Protectionism; World Trade Organization; Regulation; Non-tariff barriers; Public safety; Environmental protection;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • F13 - International Economics - - Trade - - - Trade Policy; International Trade Organizations
    • F14 - International Economics - - Trade - - - Empirical Studies of Trade
    • L15 - Industrial Organization - - Market Structure, Firm Strategy, and Market Performance - - - Information and Product Quality
    • L51 - Industrial Organization - - Regulation and Industrial Policy - - - Economics of Regulation

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