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Early globalizations: The integration of Asia in the world economy, c. 1800-1938

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  • David Chilosi

    (London School of Economics)

  • Giovanni Federico

    (University of Pisa)

Abstract

This paper contributes to the debate on globalization and the great divergence with a comprehensive analysis of the integration of Asia in the world market from 1800 to the eve of World War II. We examine the patterns of convergence in prices for a wide range of commodities between Europe and the main Asian countries (India, Indonesia, Japan and China) and we compare them with convergence between Europe and the East Coast of the United States, hitherto the yardstick for the 19th century. Most price convergence occurred before 1870, mainly as a consequence of the abolition of the European trading monopolies with Asia, and, to a lesser extent, the repeal of duties on Atlantic trade. After 1870, price differentials continued to decline thanks to falling freights and to better communication after the lay-out of telegraph cables. There was only little disintegration in the inter-war years.
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Suggested Citation

  • David Chilosi & Giovanni Federico, 2013. "Early globalizations: The integration of Asia in the world economy, c. 1800-1938," Working Papers 13020, Economic History Society.
  • Handle: RePEc:ehs:wpaper:13020
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    3. O’Rourke, Kevin Hjortshøj, 2019. "Economic History and Contemporary Challenges to Globalization," The Journal of Economic History, Cambridge University Press, vol. 79(02), pages 356-382, June.
    4. Bassino, Jean-Pascal & van der Eng, Pierre, 2019. "Japan and the Asian Divergence: Market Integration, Climate Anomalies and Famines during the 18th and 19th Centuries," CEI Working Paper Series 2018-18, Center for Economic Institutions, Institute of Economic Research, Hitotsubashi University.

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