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Per-Unit Duties: Friends or Foes of Developing Country Exporters?

  • Charlotte Emlinger
  • Houssein Guimbard

Protectionist instruments such as tariffs can distort the prices of traded goods. This paper explores the impact of specific (per-unit) duties on patterns of agricultural trade. Specific duties may encourage countries to export higher priced products, leading to an “Alchian-Allen effect” on unit values. Their restrictive effect on trade values is smaller for developed compared to developing countries. It can be explained by the specialization of these countries on low-priced products and by the low level of quality differentiation among their exports. Our results highlight the discriminating nature of specific duties for low-income countries.

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Paper provided by CEPII research center in its series Working Papers with number 2013-23.

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Date of creation: Jul 2013
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Handle: RePEc:cii:cepidt:2013-23
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  8. repec:cii:cepiei:2011-q4-128 is not listed on IDEAS
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  10. David Hummels & Alexandre Skiba, 2004. "Shipping the Good Apples Out? An Empirical Confirmation of the Alchian-Allen Conjecture," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 112(6), pages 1384-1402, December.
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  13. repec:cii:cepiei:2011-q4-128-5 is not listed on IDEAS
  14. Boumellassa, Houssein & Debucquet, David Laborde & Mitaritonna, Cristina, 2009. "A picture of tariff protection across the World in 2004: MAcMap-HS6, Version 2," IFPRI discussion papers 903, International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI).
  15. David Hummels & Peter J. Klenow, 2005. "The Variety and Quality of a Nation's Exports," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 95(3), pages 704-723, June.
  16. Amit Khandelwal, 2010. "The Long and Short (of) Quality Ladders," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 77(4), pages 1450-1476.
  17. James E. Anderson & Eric van Wincoop, 2004. "Trade Costs," NBER Working Papers 10480, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  18. Antoine Berthou & Charlotte Emlinger, 2011. "The Trade Unit Values database," International Economics, CEPII research center, issue 128, pages 97–117.
  19. Peter K. Schott, 2006. "The Relative Sophistication of Chinese Exports," NBER Working Papers 12173, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  20. Paulo Bastos & Joana Silva, . "The Quality of a Firm’s Exports: Where you Export to Matters," Discussion Papers 08/18, University of Nottingham, GEP.
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