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How Costly is Modern Maritime Piracy for the International Community?

This paper focuses on the impact of maritime piracy on international trade. Piracy increases the cost of international maritime transport through an increase in insecurity regarding goods deliveries. Bilateral trade flows between the main European and Asian countries over the 1999 to 2008 period are used to estimate an augmented gravity model that includes various measures of piracy acts. We found robust evidence indicating that maritime piracy reduces the volume of trade; the effect of ten additional vessels hijacked being associated to an 11% decrease in exports. Using these results, the international cost of piracy in terms of trade destruction is estimated to be 28 billion dollars. Finally, we compare the cost of low intensity conflict like Somalia, to the cost of a full scale conflict (Afghanistan) and to the cost of an autarkic state (North Korea) for the international community in the year 2008.The results indicate that the cost of war more than doubles the cost of low intensity conflict.

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Paper provided by Ibero-America Institute for Economic Research in its series Ibero America Institute for Econ. Research (IAI) Discussion Papers with number 208.

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Length: 35 pages
Date of creation: 07 Jan 2011
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:got:iaidps:208
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  1. Rauch, James E., 1999. "Networks versus markets in international trade," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 48(1), pages 7-35, June.
  2. Gordon Wilmsmeier & Inmaculada Martínez-Zarzoso, 2009. "Determinants of maritime transport costs -- a panel data analysis for Latin American trade," Transportation Planning and Technology, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 33(1), pages 105-121, October.
  3. James E. Anderson & Eric van Wincoop, 2003. "Gravity with Gravitas: A Solution to the Border Puzzle," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 93(1), pages 170-192, March.
  4. Benjamin Powell & Edward Stringham, 2009. "Public choice and the economic analysis of anarchy: a survey," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 140(3), pages 503-538, September.
  5. Nitsch, Volker & Schumacher, Dieter, 2004. "Terrorism and international trade: an empirical investigation," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 20(2), pages 423-433, June.
  6. Maximo Mejia & Pierre Cariou & Francois-Charles Wolff, 2009. "Is maritime piracy random?," Applied Economics Letters, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 16(9), pages 891-895.
  7. Anderson, James E. & Bandiera, Oriana, 2006. "Traders, cops and robbers," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 70(1), pages 197-215, September.
  8. Douglas Marcouiller, S.J., 2000. "Hijacking, Hold-Up, and International Trade," Boston College Working Papers in Economics 477, Boston College Department of Economics.
  9. Michele Fratianni & Heejoon Kang, 2006. "International Terrorism, International Trade, and Borders," Working Papers 2006-13, Indiana University, Kelley School of Business, Department of Business Economics and Public Policy.
  10. S. Brock Blomberg & Gregory D. Hess, 2006. "How Much Does Violence Tax Trade?," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 88(4), pages 599-612, November.
  11. James E. Anderson & Douglas Marcouiller, 2005. "Anarchy And Autarky: Endogenous Predation As A Barrier To Trade," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 46(1), pages 189-213, 02.
  12. Leeson, Peter T., 2007. "Better off stateless: Somalia before and after government collapse," Journal of Comparative Economics, Elsevier, vol. 35(4), pages 689-710, December.
  13. James E. Anderson, 2008. "Commercial Policy in a Predatory World," Boston College Working Papers in Economics 703, Boston College Department of Economics.
  14. James E. Anderson & Douglas Marcouiller, S.J., 1999. "Insecurity and the Pattern of Trade: An Empirical Investigation," Boston College Working Papers in Economics 418, Boston College Department of Economics, revised 03 Aug 2000.
  15. Mirza, Daniel & Verdier, Thierry, 2008. "International trade, security and transnational terrorism: Theory and a survey of empirics," Journal of Comparative Economics, Elsevier, vol. 36(2), pages 179-194, June.
  16. José de Sousa & Daniel Mirza & Thierry Verdier, 2009. "Trade and the Spillovers of Transnational Terrorism," Swiss Journal of Economics and Statistics (SJES), Swiss Society of Economics and Statistics (SSES), vol. 145(IV), pages 453-461, December.
  17. Helen B Bendall, 2010. "Cost of piracy: A comparative voyage approach," Maritime Economics and Logistics, Palgrave Macmillan, vol. 12(2), pages 178-195, June.
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