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Protection for Sale Made Easy


  • Baldwin, Richard
  • Robert-Nicoud, Frédéric


Formal analysis of the political economy of trade policy was substantially redirected by the appearance of Gene Grossman and Elhanan Helpman's 1994 paper, 'Protection for Sale'. Before that article a fairly wide range of approaches were favoured by various authors on various issues, but afterwards, the vast majority of theoretical tracts on endogenous trade policy have used the Protection for Sale framework (PFS for short) as their main vehicle. The reason, of course, is that the framework is both respectable - because its microfoundations are distinctly firmer than were those of the earlier lobbying approaches - and it is very easy to work with. Despite the popularity of the PFS framework, it appears that no one has presented a simple diagram that illustrates how the PFS frameworks and explains why it is so easy. This short note aims to remedy that omission.

Suggested Citation

  • Baldwin, Richard & Robert-Nicoud, Frédéric, 2006. "Protection for Sale Made Easy," CEPR Discussion Papers 5452, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  • Handle: RePEc:cpr:ceprdp:5452

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Andrew B. Bernard & J. Bradford Jensen & Stephen J. Redding & Peter K. Schott, 2007. "Firms in International Trade," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 21(3), pages 105-130, Summer.
    2. Alejandro Cuñat & Marc J. Melitz, 2012. "Volatility, Labor Market Flexibility, And The Pattern Of Comparative Advantage," Journal of the European Economic Association, European Economic Association, vol. 10(2), pages 225-254, April.
    3. Buiter, Willem H., 2007. "Seigniorage," Economics - The Open-Access, Open-Assessment E-Journal, Kiel Institute for the World Economy (IfW), vol. 1, pages 1-49.
    4. Smart, Michael & Sturm, Daniel M., 2013. "Term limits and electoral accountability," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 107(C), pages 93-102.
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    Cited by:

    1. Richard Baldwin & Frédéric Robert-Nicoud, 2015. "A simple model of the juggernaut effect of trade liberalisation," International Economics, CEPII research center, issue 143, pages 70-79.
    2. Richard E. Baldwin, 2011. "Multilateralising Regionalism: Spaghetti Bowls as Building Blocks on the Path to Global Free Trade," Chapters,in: International Handbook on the Economics of Integration, Volume I, chapter 2 Edward Elgar Publishing.
    3. Richard E. Baldwin & Frédéric Robert-Nicoud, 2007. "Entry and Asymmetric Lobbying: Why Governments Pick Losers," Journal of the European Economic Association, MIT Press, vol. 5(5), pages 1064-1093, September.
    4. Baldwin, Richard, 2010. "Unilateral tariff liberalisation," CEPR Discussion Papers 8162, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    5. Richard E. Baldwin, 2006. "Multilateralising Regionalism: Spaghetti Bowls as Building Blocs on the Path to Global Free Trade," The World Economy, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 29(11), pages 1451-1518, November.

    More about this item


    endogenous protection; protection for sale;

    JEL classification:

    • H32 - Public Economics - - Fiscal Policies and Behavior of Economic Agents - - - Firm
    • P16 - Economic Systems - - Capitalist Systems - - - Political Economy of Capitalism

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