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International Strategic Choice of Minimum Quality Standards and Welfare

  • Stefan Lutz


  • Mario Pezzino


We study the influence of minimum quality standards in a two-region partial-equilibrium model of vertical product differentiation and trade. Three alternative standard setting arrangements are considered: Full Harmonization, National Treatment and Mutual Recognition. The analysis integrates the choice of a particular standard setting alternative by governments into the model. We provide a set of sufficient conditions for which Mutual Recognition emerges as one regulatory alternative that always improves welfare in both regions when compared to the case without regulation. We show that Mutual Recognition, being the default procedure if governments do not reach a unanimous decision, is the only possible equilibrium of the game.

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Paper provided by ICER - International Centre for Economic Research in its series ICER Working Papers with number 02-2009.

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Length: 31 pages
Date of creation: May 2009
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:icr:wpicer:02-2009
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  1. David P Angel & Michael T Rock, 2005. "Global standards and the environmental performance of industry," Environment and Planning A, Pion Ltd, London, vol. 37(11), pages 1903-1918, November.
  2. Crampes, C. & Hollander, A., 1992. "Duopoly and Quality Standards," Papers 92.g, Toulouse - GREMAQ.
  3. Boom, Anette, 1995. "Asymmetric International Minimum Quality Standards and Vertical Differentiation," Journal of Industrial Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 43(1), pages 101-19, March.
  4. Hansen, Jørgen Drud & Møller Nielsen, Jørgen Ulff, 2006. "Economic Integration and Quality Standards in a Duopoly Model with Horizontal and Vertical Product Differentiation," Journal of Economic Integration, Center for Economic Integration, Sejong University, vol. 21, pages 837-860.
  5. Venables, Anthony J., 1990. "The economic integration of oligopolistic markets," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 34(4), pages 753-769, June.
  6. Maxwell, John W., 1998. "Minimum quality standards as a barrier to innovation," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 58(3), pages 355-360, March.
  7. repec:bla:restud:v:49:y:1982:i:1:p:3-13 is not listed on IDEAS
  8. David P. Myatt & Justin P. Johnson, 2002. "Multiproduct Quality Competition: Fighting Brands and Product Line Pruning," Economics Series Working Papers 105, University of Oxford, Department of Economics.
  9. Valletti, Tommaso M, 2000. "Minimum Quality Standards under Cournot Competition," Journal of Regulatory Economics, Springer, vol. 18(3), pages 235-45, November.
  10. Jaskold Gabszewicz, J. & Thisse, J. -F., 1979. "Price competition, quality and income disparities," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 20(3), pages 340-359, June.
  11. Smith, Alasdair & Venables, Anthony J, 1988. "Completing the Internal Market in the European Community: Some Industry Simulations," CEPR Discussion Papers 233, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  12. H. Lutz, Stefan, 2000. "Trade Effects of Minimum Quality Standards with and without Deterred Entry," Journal of Economic Integration, Center for Economic Integration, Sejong University, vol. 15, pages 314-344.
  13. Ecchia, Giulio & Lambertini, Luca, 1997. "Minimum Quality Standards and Collusion," Journal of Industrial Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 45(1), pages 101-13, March.
  14. repec:tpr:qjecon:v:98:y:1983:i:4:p:659-79 is not listed on IDEAS
  15. Lutz, Stefan & Lyon, Thomas P & Maxwell, John W, 2000. "Quality Leadership When Regulatory Standards Are Forthcoming," Journal of Industrial Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 48(3), pages 331-48, September.
  16. Besanko, David & Donnenfeld, Shabtai & White, Lawrence J, 1988. "The Multiproduct Firm, Quality Choice, and Regulation," Journal of Industrial Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 36(4), pages 411-29, June.
  17. Das, Satya P. & Donnenfeld, Shabtai, 1989. "Oligopolistic competition and international trade : Quantity and quality restrictions," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 27(3-4), pages 299-318, November.
  18. Scarpa, Carlo, 1998. "Minimum quality standards with more than two firms1," International Journal of Industrial Organization, Elsevier, vol. 16(5), pages 665-676, September.
  19. Constantatos, Christos & Perrakis, Stylianos, 1998. "Minimum Quality Standards, Entry, and the Timing of the Quality Decision," Journal of Regulatory Economics, Springer, vol. 13(1), pages 47-58, January.
  20. Leland, Hayne E, 1979. "Quacks, Lemons, and Licensing: A Theory of Minimum Quality Standards," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 87(6), pages 1328-46, December.
  21. Motta, Massimo, 1993. "Endogenous Quality Choice: Price vs. Quantity Competition," Journal of Industrial Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 41(2), pages 113-31, June.
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