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The Role of Distance in Determining International Transport Costs: Evidence from Philippine Import Data


  • Kuwamori, Hiroshi


This paper presents an empirical investigation of the appropriateness of distance as a determinant of international transport costs by using Philippine import data. This study addresses three specific questions. First, does distance really matter in the determination of transport costs? Second, if distance is a significant factor, what is the magnitude of its impact? Third, does the impact of distance on transport costs vary by commodity?Results indicate that while distance is important in determining transport costs, using distance alone as the proxy of international transport costs is insufficient, and such use underestimates the impact of distance on international transport costs. Results also indicate that the impact of distance varies across commodity groups, but it is difficult to precisely determine the direction and the magnitude of this impact.

Suggested Citation

  • Kuwamori, Hiroshi, 2006. "The Role of Distance in Determining International Transport Costs: Evidence from Philippine Import Data," IDE Discussion Papers 60, Institute of Developing Economies, Japan External Trade Organization(JETRO).
  • Handle: RePEc:jet:dpaper:dpaper60

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    Cited by:

    1. Craig Macphee & Peter Cook & Wanasin Sattayanuwat, 2013. "Transportation and The International Trade of Eastern and Southern Africa," South African Journal of Economics, Economic Society of South Africa, vol. 81(2), pages 225-239, June.
    2. Gomez-Herrera, Estrella & Martens, Bertin & Turlea, Geomina, 2014. "The drivers and impediments for cross-border e-commerce in the EU," Information Economics and Policy, Elsevier, vol. 28(C), pages 83-96.

    More about this item


    Transport costs; Distance; International trade; Imports; Philippines; 貿易; 輸入; フィリピン;

    JEL classification:

    • F14 - International Economics - - Trade - - - Empirical Studies of Trade
    • L91 - Industrial Organization - - Industry Studies: Transportation and Utilities - - - Transportation: General

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