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Choked By Red Tape? The Political Economy of Wasteful Trade Barriers

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  • Giovanni Maggi
  • Monika Mrázová
  • Peter Neary

Abstract

Red-tape barriers (RTBs) are an important source of trade costs, but have received little scholarly attention to date. Here we examine the economic-political determinants of RTBs and their effects on trade. Because of their wasteful nature, RTBs have very different implications from those of more traditional trade barriers. In particular, RTBs have important impacts on the extensive margin of trade, and respond in non-standard ways to changes in tariffs and natural trade costs. We argue that taking into account the endogenous response of RTBs is crucial for understanding the effects of tariff liberalization and globalization on trade and welfare.

Suggested Citation

  • Giovanni Maggi & Monika Mrázová & Peter Neary, 2018. "Choked By Red Tape? The Political Economy of Wasteful Trade Barriers," NBER Working Papers 24739, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  • Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:24739
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Anderson, James E & Neary, J Peter, 1992. "Trade Reform with Quotas, Partial Rent Retention, and Tariffs," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 60(1), pages 57-76, January.
    2. Baldwin, Richard, 1987. "Politically realistic objective functions and trade policy PROFs and tariffs," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 24(3), pages 287-290.
    3. Limão, Nuno & Tovar, Patricia, 2011. "Policy choice: Theory and evidence from commitment via international trade agreements," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 85(2), pages 186-205.
    4. Robert A. Pollak, 1971. "Additive Utility Functions and Linear Engel Curves," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 38(4), pages 401-414.
    5. Beverelli, Cosimo & Neumueller, Simon & Teh, Robert, 2015. "Export Diversification Effects of the WTO Trade Facilitation Agreement," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 76(C), pages 293-310.
    6. Hildegunn Kyvik Nordås & Enrico Pinali & Massimo Geloso Grosso, 2006. "Logistics and Time as a Trade Barrier," OECD Trade Policy Papers 35, OECD Publishing.
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    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • D72 - Microeconomics - - Analysis of Collective Decision-Making - - - Political Processes: Rent-seeking, Lobbying, Elections, Legislatures, and Voting Behavior
    • F13 - International Economics - - Trade - - - Trade Policy; International Trade Organizations

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