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Product-level estimation of import demand: Simulating the effects of tariff harmonisation


  • Winston Moore
  • Diego Morris


Developing countries have traditionally used import tariffs to protect infant industries and raise revenues to finance government expenditure plans. This approach, however, has tended to protect inefficient industries and to some extent hindered economic development. A disaggregated import demand model is estimated using monthly observations on 91 of the most frequently imported product items in Barbados. The results are then employed to evaluate the feasibility of harmonising tariff rates to some single rate across product categories. The results suggest that the estimation of aggregate import demand equations is not accepted by the data and therefore could result in misleading inferences. The policy simulation exercise indicates that a single applied tariff at the 30% level would essentially be revenue neutral, while rates above this level would lead to reductions in tax receipts.

Suggested Citation

  • Winston Moore & Diego Morris, 2012. "Product-level estimation of import demand: Simulating the effects of tariff harmonisation," The Journal of International Trade & Economic Development, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 21(5), pages 655-676, August.
  • Handle: RePEc:taf:jitecd:v:21:y:2012:i:5:p:655-676
    DOI: 10.1080/09638199.2010.514938

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