IDEAS home Printed from
   My bibliography  Save this article

On the Impact of Transportation Costs on Trade in a Multilateral World


  • Peter Egger

    () (University of Munich and Ifo Institute)


This article proposes to account for the differences in the importance of transport costs, depending on characteristics of trading partners. In a multiregion model of trade in differentiated goods we expect a smaller impact of transport costs on a country's exports as a share of importer gross domestic product (GDP) the more (less) relatively capital-abundant the exporter (importer) is and the lower (higher) production costs are as captured by GDP at given factor endowments and diversity, all else equal. Empirically, this requires four interaction terms in addition to the direct impact of transport costs when estimating log-linear gravity models: one with the exporter GDP per capita or capital-labor ratio, a second one with the importer GDP per capita or capital-labor ratio, and a third and fourth with exporter and importer GDP, respectively. The hypotheses are strongly supported by the evidence from a large panel of bilateral trade between 1970 and 2000.

Suggested Citation

  • Peter Egger, 2005. "On the Impact of Transportation Costs on Trade in a Multilateral World," Southern Economic Journal, Southern Economic Association, vol. 71(3), pages 592-606, January.
  • Handle: RePEc:sej:ancoec:v:71:3:y:2005:p:592-606

    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.

    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Jan Isaksen, 2002. "Energy cooperation in Southern Africa: What role for Norway?," CMI Working Papers WP 2002:4, CMI (Chr. Michelsen Institute), Bergen, Norway.
    2. Summers, Lawrence H & Pritchett, Lant H, 1993. "The Structural-Adjustment Debate," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 83(2), pages 383-389, May.
    3. Ivar Kolstad, 2003. "The evolution of social norms," CMI Working Papers WP 2003:1, CMI (Chr. Michelsen Institute), Bergen, Norway.
    4. Dollar, David & Svensson, Jakob, 2000. "What Explains the Success or Failure of Structural Adjustment Programmes?," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 110(466), pages 894-917, October.
    5. Alesina, Alberto & Dollar, David, 2000. "Who Gives Foreign Aid to Whom and Why?," Journal of Economic Growth, Springer, vol. 5(1), pages 33-63, March.
    6. Abreu, Dilip, 1988. "On the Theory of Infinitely Repeated Games with Discounting," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 56(2), pages 383-396, March.
    7. Svensson, Jakob, 2000. "Foreign aid and rent-seeking," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 51(2), pages 437-461, August.
    8. Svensson, Jakob, 2000. "When is foreign aid policy credible? Aid dependence and conditionality," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 61(1), pages 61-84, February.
    9. Odd-Helge Fjeldstad, 2002. "Fighting fiscal corruption: The case of the Tanzania Revenue Authority," CMI Working Papers WP 2002:3, CMI (Chr. Michelsen Institute), Bergen, Norway.
    10. C-J. Dalgaard & H. Hansen, 2001. "On Aid, Growth and Good Policies," Journal of Development Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 37(6), pages 17-41.
    11. Odd-Helge Fjeldstad, 2002. "The fight against corruption and the role of parliamentarians," CMI Working Papers WP 2002:6, CMI (Chr. Michelsen Institute), Bergen, Norway.
    12. David Dollar & Craig Burnside, 2000. "Aid, Policies, and Growth," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 90(4), pages 847-868, September.
    13. Basu, Kaushik, 1986. "One Kind of Power," Oxford Economic Papers, Oxford University Press, vol. 38(2), pages 259-282, July.
    14. Henrik Hansen & Finn Tarp, 2000. "Aid effectiveness disputed," Journal of International Development, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 12(3), pages 375-398, April.
    15. Hatlebakk, Magnus, 2002. "A new and robust subgame perfect equilibrium in a model of triadic power relations," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 68(1), pages 225-232, June.
    16. Ussif Rashid Sumaila & Joseph Apaloo, 2002. "A selected survey of traditional and evolutionary game theory," CMI Working Papers WP 2002:7, CMI (Chr. Michelsen Institute), Bergen, Norway.
    17. Hansen, Henrik & Tarp, Finn, 2001. "Aid and growth regressions," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 64(2), pages 547-570, April.
    18. Pedersen, Karl R, 1996. " Aid, Investment and Incentives," Scandinavian Journal of Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 98(3), pages 423-438.
    19. Trumbull, William N & Wall, Howard J, 1994. "Estimating Aid-Allocation Criteria with Panel Data," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 104(425), pages 876-882, July.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)


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

    Cited by:

    1. Inmaculada Martínez-Zarzoso & Felicitas Nowak-Lehmann D., 2006. "Road and Maritime Transport Costs: A Comparative Analysis of Spanish Exports to Poland and Turkey," Ibero America Institute for Econ. Research (IAI) Discussion Papers 138, Ibero-America Institute for Economic Research.
    2. Inmaculada Martinez-Zarzoso & Felicitas D. Nowak-Lehmann, 2007. "Is distance a good proxy for transport costs? The case of competing transport modes," The Journal of International Trade & Economic Development, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 16(3), pages 411-434.
    3. repec:got:cegedp:54 is not listed on IDEAS

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • C23 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Single Equation Models; Single Variables - - - Models with Panel Data; Spatio-temporal Models
    • F14 - International Economics - - Trade - - - Empirical Studies of Trade


    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:sej:ancoec:v:71:3:y:2005:p:592-606. 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: (Laura Razzolini). 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.