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Procompetitive Trade Policies

  • Moraga-Gonzalez, Jose Luis

    (Erasmus University Rotterdam)

  • Jean-Marie Viaene

We study the procompetitive effects of trade policies against a foreign oligopoly in a model of vertical product differentiation. We show that a uniform tariff policy like the Most Favored Nation (MFN) clause is welfare superior to free trade because of a pure rent-extraction effect. A nonuniform tariff policy is, in addition, procompetitive and thus yields a higher level of social welfare. The first best policy typically consists of subsidizing production of low quality and levying a tariff on production of high quality. Regional Trade Agreements (RTAs) are examples of nonuniform tariff policies. We show that these arrangements yield higher welfare than free trade and, moreover, that a RTA with a low-quality producing country yields larger gains than a RTA with a high-quality producing country.

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Paper provided by Royal Economic Society in its series Royal Economic Society Annual Conference 2002 with number 141.

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Date of creation: 29 Aug 2002
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Handle: RePEc:ecj:ac2002:141
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