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Unilateral tariff liberalisation

  • Baldwin, Richard

Unilateral tariff liberalisation by developing nations is pervasive but our understanding of it is shallow. This paper strives to partly redress this lacuna on the theory side by introducing three novel political economy mechanisms with particular emphasis is on the role of production unbundling. One mechanism studies how lowering frictional barriers to imported parts can destroy the correlation of interests between parts producers and their downstream customers. A second mechanism studies how Kojima’s pro-trade FDI raises the political economy cost of maintaining high upstream barriers. The third works via a general equilibrium channel whereby developing country’s participation in the supply chains of advanced-nation industries undermines their own competitiveness in final goods, thus making final good protection more politically costly. In essence, developing nations’ pursuit of the export-processing industrialisation undermines their infant-industry industrialisation strategies.

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Paper provided by C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers in its series CEPR Discussion Papers with number 8162.

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Date of creation: Dec 2010
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Handle: RePEc:cpr:ceprdp:8162
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  1. Hector Calvo-Pardo & Caroline Freund & Emanuel Ornelas, 2009. "The ASEAN Free Trade Agreement: Impact on Trade Flows and External Trade Barriers," CEP Discussion Papers dp0930, Centre for Economic Performance, LSE.
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  27. Baldwin, Richard E., 2007. "Managing the Noodle Bowl: The Fragility of East Asian Regionalism," Working Papers on Regional Economic Integration 7, Asian Development Bank.
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  30. Wilfred J. Ethier, 2002. "Unilateralism in a Multilateral World," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 112(479), pages 266-292, April.
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  34. Cadot, Olivier & de Melo, Jaime & Olarreaga, Marcelo, 2003. "The protectionist bias of duty drawbacks: evidence from Mercosur," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 59(1), pages 161-182, January.
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