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Covid-19 Shocking Global Value Chains


  • Peter Eppinger
  • Gabriel J. Felbermayr
  • Oliver Krebs
  • Bohdan Kukharskyy


In early 2020, the disease Covid-19 caused a drastic lockdown of the Chinese economy. We use a quantitative trade model with input-output linkages to gauge the effects of this adverse supply shock in China on the global economy through international trade and global value chains (GVCs). We find moderate welfare losses in most countries outside of China, while a few countries even gain from the shock due to trade diversion. As a key methodological contribution, we quantify the role of GVCs (in contrast to final goods trade) in transmitting the shock. In a hypothetical world without GVCs, the welfare loss due to the Covid-19 shock in China is reduced by 40% in the median country. In several other countries, the effects are magnified or reversed for several countries. Had the U.S. unilaterally repatriated GVCs, the country would have incurred a substantial welfare loss while its exposure to the shock would have barely changed.

Suggested Citation

  • Peter Eppinger & Gabriel J. Felbermayr & Oliver Krebs & Bohdan Kukharskyy, 2020. "Covid-19 Shocking Global Value Chains," CESifo Working Paper Series 8572, CESifo.
  • Handle: RePEc:ces:ceswps:_8572

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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Giofré, Maela, 2021. "COVID-19 stringency measures and foreign investment: An early assessment," The North American Journal of Economics and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 58(C).
    2. Rossella Bardazzi & Leonardo Ghezzi, 2021. "Large-scale Multinational Shocks and International Trade: a Non-zero-sum Game," Working Papers - Economics wp2021_09.rdf, Universita' degli Studi di Firenze, Dipartimento di Scienze per l'Economia e l'Impresa.
    3. Zhang, Qianxue, 2021. "Supply shocks in China hit the world economy via global supply chains," The Warwick Economics Research Paper Series (TWERPS) 1323, University of Warwick, Department of Economics.
    4. Nashwan M. A. Saif & Jianping Ruan & Bojan Obrenovic, 2021. "Sustaining Trade during COVID-19 Pandemic: Establishing a Conceptual Model Including COVID-19 Impact," Sustainability, MDPI, vol. 13(10), pages 1-20, May.

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    More about this item


    Covid-19; quantitative trade model; input-output linkages; global value chains; supply chain contagion; shock transmission;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • F11 - International Economics - - Trade - - - Neoclassical Models of Trade
    • F12 - International Economics - - Trade - - - Models of Trade with Imperfect Competition and Scale Economies; Fragmentation
    • F14 - International Economics - - Trade - - - Empirical Studies of Trade
    • F17 - International Economics - - Trade - - - Trade Forecasting and Simulation
    • F62 - International Economics - - Economic Impacts of Globalization - - - Macroeconomic Impacts

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