Implications of WTO Agreements and Domestic Trade Policy Reforms for Poverty in Bangladesh: Short vs. Long Run
We examine the impacts of WTO agreements and domestic trade policy reforms on production, welfare and poverty in Bangladesh. A sequential dynamic computable general equilibrium (CGE) model, which takes into account accumulation effects, is used allowing for long run analysis. The study is based on 2000 SAM of Bangladesh including fifteen production sectors, four factors of production (skilled and unskilled labour, agricultural and non-agricultural capital) and mine household groups (five in rural areas and four in urban areas) based on the year 2000 household survey. To examine the link between the macro effects and micro effects in terms of poverty we use the representative household approach with actual intra-group income distributions. The study presents five simulations for which the major findings are: (1) the Doha scenario has negative implications for the overall macro economy, household welfare and poverty in Bangladesh. Terms of trade deteriorate and consumer prices, particularly food prices, increase more than nominal incomes, especially among poor households; (2) Free world trade has similar, but larger, impacts; (3) Domestic trade liberalisation induces an expansion of agricultural and light manufacturing sectors, favourable changes in the domestic terms of trade. Although the short run welfare and poverty impacts are negative, these turn positive in the long run when capital has adjusted through new investments. Rising unskilled wage rates make the poorest household the biggest winners in terms of welfare and poverty reduction; (4) Domestic liberalisation effects far outweigh those of free world trade when these scenarios are combined; (5) Remittances constitute a powerful poverty-reducing tool given their greater importance in the income of the poor.
|Date of creation:||2005|
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