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Shooting Oneself in the Foot? Trade War and Global Value Chains

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  • Cecilia Bellora
  • Lionel Fontagné

Abstract

Since the beginning of 2018, the US administration has announced and implemented several measures limiting US trade, in particular with China. This has fueled retaliation and has escalated in high trade tensions at the global level. We address in this paper the effects of the current trade tensions on trade, sectoral value added and welfare, in General Equilibrium under imperfect competition. We rely on a set-up differentiating demand of goods according to their use, for final or intermediate consumption. This authorizes tracing the impact of protection, along the value chains, on prices, value added and factor income. Additional tariffs from official lists are averaged at the 6 digit level of the Harmonized System (HS6), before being aggregated at the sector level with a reference group weighted method. Negotiated quantities in Voluntary Export Restraints are also taken into account at the product level. Beyond the direct toll of sanctions, US exports to the world post a 7.5% decrease as a result of reduced competitiveness led by vertical linkages along the value chains. Because of the measures in place as of August 2019, three quarters of the sectors decrease their value added in the US, suggesting that with this tariff war the US are shooting themselves in the foot. The quantification of job destructions and creations in the different sectors is consistent with effects channeling through prices and demand along the value chains detrimental to downstream industries.

Suggested Citation

  • Cecilia Bellora & Lionel Fontagné, 2019. "Shooting Oneself in the Foot? Trade War and Global Value Chains," Working Papers 2019-18, CEPII research center.
  • Handle: RePEc:cii:cepidt:2019-18
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    Cited by:

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    3. Laurence Wicht, 2019. "The impact of trade tensions on Switzerland: A quantitative assessment," Aussenwirtschaft, University of St. Gallen, School of Economics and Political Science, Swiss Institute for International Economics and Applied Economics Research, vol. 70(01), pages 1-34, December.
    4. Haiou Mao & Holger Görg, 2020. "Friends like this: The impact of the US–China trade war on global value chains," The World Economy, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 43(7), pages 1776-1791, July.
    5. Li, Minghao & Balistreri, Edward J. & Zhang, Wendong, 2020. "The U.S.–China trade war: Tariff data and general equilibrium analysis," Journal of Asian Economics, Elsevier, vol. 69(C).
    6. Pablo D Fajgelbaum & Pinelopi K Goldberg & Patrick J Kennedy & Amit K Khandelwal, 2020. "The Return to Protectionism," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 135(1), pages 1-55.
    7. Nugroho, Anda & Widyastutik, & Irawan, Tony & Amaliah, Syarifah, 2021. "Does the US–China trade war increase poverty in a developing country? A dynamic general equilibrium analysis for Indonesia," Economic Analysis and Policy, Elsevier, vol. 71(C), pages 279-290.
    8. James A. Giesecke & Nhi H. Tran & Robert Waschik, 2021. "Should Australia be concerned by Beijing’s trade threats: modelling the economic costs of a restriction on imports of Australian coal," Australian Journal of Agricultural and Resource Economics, Australian Agricultural and Resource Economics Society, vol. 65(1), pages 1-22, January.
    9. Bown, Chad P. & Erbahar, Aksel & Zanardi, Maurizio, 2021. "Global value chains and the removal of trade protection," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 140(C).
    10. Bekkers, Eddy & Schroeter, Sofia, 2020. "An economic analysis of the US-China trade conflict," WTO Staff Working Papers ERSD-2020-04, World Trade Organization (WTO), Economic Research and Statistics Division.
    11. Jungran Cho & Emma Kyoungseo Hong & Jeongho Yoo & Inkyo Cheong, 2020. "The Impact of Global Protectionism on Port Logistics Demand," Sustainability, MDPI, vol. 12(4), pages 1-17, February.
    12. John C. Beghin & Heidi Schweizer, 2021. "Agricultural Trade Costs," Applied Economic Perspectives and Policy, John Wiley & Sons, vol. 43(2), pages 500-530, June.
    13. Meinen, Philipp & Schulte, Patrick & Cigna, Simone & Steinhoff, Nils, 2019. "The impact of US tariffs against China on US imports: Evidence for trade diversion?," Discussion Papers 46/2019, Deutsche Bundesbank.
    14. Fiorentini, Riccardo, 2020. "The Persisting US Trade Deficit: Is Protectionistm the Right Answer?," Economia Internazionale / International Economics, Camera di Commercio Industria Artigianato Agricoltura di Genova, vol. 73(2), pages 155-186.
    15. Johan Swinnen & Alessandro Olper & Senne Vandevelde, 2021. "From unfair prices to unfair trading practices: Political economy, value chains and 21st century agri‐food policy," Agricultural Economics, International Association of Agricultural Economists, vol. 52(5), pages 771-788, September.
    16. Ilaria Fusacchia & Alessandro Antimiani & Luca Salvatici, 2021. "An assessment of import tariff costs for Italian exporting firms," Economia Politica: Journal of Analytical and Institutional Economics, Springer;Fondazione Edison, vol. 38(1), pages 31-56, April.
    17. J.A. Giesecke & R. Waschik & N.H. Tran, 2019. "Modelling the Consequences of the U.S.-China Trade War and Related Trade Frictions for the U.S., Chinese, Australian and Global Economies," Centre of Policy Studies/IMPACT Centre Working Papers g-294, Victoria University, Centre of Policy Studies/IMPACT Centre.
    18. Lashkaripour, Ahmad, 2021. "The cost of a global tariff war: A sufficient statistics approach," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 131(C).
    19. Simone Cigna & Philipp Meinen & Patrick Schulte & Nils Steinhoff, 2022. "The impact of US tariffs against China on US imports: Evidence for trade diversion?," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 60(1), pages 162-173, January.
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    22. Simola, Heli, 2019. "Evaluating international impacts of China-specific shocks in an input-output framework," BOFIT Discussion Papers 17/2019, Bank of Finland, Institute for Economies in Transition.

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Trade War; Global Value Chains;

    JEL classification:

    • F13 - International Economics - - Trade - - - Trade Policy; International Trade Organizations
    • F17 - International Economics - - Trade - - - Trade Forecasting and Simulation

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