Estimating The Effects of the Container Revolution on World Trade
We quantify the effects of the container revolution on a large panel of product level trade flows during 1962-1990. We exploit time and cross-sectional variation in countries’ first adoption of container facilities to construct a time-varying bilateral container technology variable and estimate its effects on trade in the panel. On North-North trade, the cumulative average treatment effects of containerization over a 20 year time period amount to about 700%, can be interpreted as causal and are larger than the standard policy liberalization variables. In a nutshell, we provide the first econometric evidence for containerization to be a driver of 20th century economic globalization.
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