IDEAS home Printed from
   My bibliography  Save this article

The Credibility Problem in Trade Liberalisation: Empirical Evidence form Kenya


  • Reinikka, Ritva


This paper quantifies the welfare cost created by speculative accumulation of imports in Kenya during four trade reforms between 1976-92. These episodes suffered from a lack of credibility because they were perceived to be either time-inconsistent or incompatible with the exchange rate, fiscal or monetary policy. Kenyan data confirms that the private sector was able to anticipate the fate of the reforms and that it hedged against their reversal by accumulating foreign exchange licenses and bonded and actual imports. There are some indications of deferral of investment and increased liquidity during the abortive reforms. The speculative response seems to be self-fulfilling, as rapidly declining external reserves usually forced the government to abandon the reforms. The 1980 import liberalisation was the most costly attempt. Copyright 1996 by Oxford University Press.

Suggested Citation

  • Reinikka, Ritva, 1996. "The Credibility Problem in Trade Liberalisation: Empirical Evidence form Kenya," Journal of African Economies, Centre for the Study of African Economies (CSAE), vol. 5(3), pages 444-468, October.
  • Handle: RePEc:oup:jafrec:v:5:y:1996:i:3:p:444-68

    Download full text from publisher

    To our knowledge, this item is not available for download. To find whether it is available, there are three options:
    1. Check below whether another version of this item is available online.
    2. Check on the provider's web page whether it is in fact available.
    3. Perform a search for a similarly titled item that would be available.


    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.

    Cited by:

    1. Jan Willem Gunning & Paul Collier, 1999. "Explaining African Economic Performance," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 37(1), pages 64-111, March.
    2. Richard Mash, 1997. "Reversible reforms with irreversible capital: the investment response to imperfectly credible trade liberalistion," Economics Series Working Papers WPS/1997-06, University of Oxford, Department of Economics.

    More about this item


    Access and download statistics


    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:oup:jafrec:v:5:y:1996:i:3:p:444-68. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Oxford University Press) or (Christopher F. Baum). General contact details of provider: .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    We have no references for this item. You can help adding them by using this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.