IDEAS home Printed from
   My bibliography  Save this paper

Direct and Relative Effects of the Import Tariff: Method and Application Using the Industrial Level Data


  • Miao, Zhuang
  • Wu, Xiaokang
  • Yu, Jinping


The importing country usually imposes heterogeneous import tariff rates based on the national origins of the products. Reducing the tariff rates on the products from one origin country not only increases the import flows from this country, but also decreases the import flows from the other trade partners of the importing country. (Direct and relative effects of the import tariff) This paper constructs a variation of the conventional gravity model to analyze the direct and relative effects of the import tariff on international trade flows at the industrial level. Based on our theoretical framework, we compute a new indicator to measure the relative effect and estimate both effects using the Chinese industrial level data. Our empirical findings are consistent with our theoretical predictions: (i) if the tariff rates are reduced towards one origin country, the importing country will import more from this country but reduce the imports from the other origins; (ii) the relative effect is more effective at the industry or country where the importing penetration ratio is relatively high; and (iii) omission of the import penetration ratio will lead to the underestimation of the effects of the multilateral resistance terms on trade performances. Our research contributes to the existing literature by introducing a manipulable method to compute the direct and relative effects of the trade cost at the industrial level, which takes the heterogeneity among industries and countries into account.

Suggested Citation

  • Miao, Zhuang & Wu, Xiaokang & Yu, Jinping, 2018. "Direct and Relative Effects of the Import Tariff: Method and Application Using the Industrial Level Data," MPRA Paper 86779, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  • Handle: RePEc:pra:mprapa:86779

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL:
    File Function: original version
    Download Restriction: no

    File URL:
    File Function: revised version
    Download Restriction: no

    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Gordon H. Hanson & Chong Xiang, 2004. "The Home-Market Effect and Bilateral Trade Patterns," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 94(4), pages 1108-1129, September.
    2. Joseph Francois & Bernard Hoekman & Miriam Manchin, 2006. "Preference Erosion and Multilateral Trade Liberalization," World Bank Economic Review, World Bank Group, vol. 20(2), pages 197-216.
    3. Peter Egger & Douglas Nelson, 2011. "How Bad Is Antidumping? Evidence from Panel Data," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 93(4), pages 1374-1390, November.
    4. Antoni Estevadeordal & Caroline Freund & Emanuel Ornelas, 2008. "Does Regionalism Affect Trade Liberalization Toward Nonmembers?," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 123(4), pages 1531-1575.
    5. Fugazza, Marco & Nicita, Alessandro, 2013. "The direct and relative effects of preferential market access," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 89(2), pages 357-368.
    6. Elhanan Helpman & Marc Melitz & Yona Rubinstein, 2008. "Estimating Trade Flows: Trading Partners and Trading Volumes," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 123(2), pages 441-487.
    7. Jon D. Haveman & Usha Nair-Reichert & Jerry G. Thursby, 2003. "How Effective are Trade Barriers? An Empirical Analysis of Trade Reduction, Diversion, and Compression," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 85(2), pages 480-485, May.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    More about this item


    International trade; Gravity equation; Industrial heterogeneity; China;

    JEL classification:

    • F14 - International Economics - - Trade - - - Empirical Studies of Trade
    • F15 - International Economics - - Trade - - - Economic Integration

    NEP fields

    This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:


    Access and download statistics


    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:pra:mprapa:86779. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Joachim Winter) or (Rebekah McClure). General contact details of provider: .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If CitEc recognized a reference but did not link an item in RePEc to it, you can help with this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.