Trade and Colonial Status
Does colonisation explain differences in trade performance across developing countries? In this paper, we analyse the differential impact of British versus French colonial legacies on the current trade of African ex-colonies. We initially find that former British colonies trade more, on average, than do their French counterparts. This difference might be the result of the relative superiority of British institutions. However, a core concern is the non-random selection of colonies by the British. Historians argue that with Britain, trade preceded colonisation. Using an instrument based on colonisation history to control for this endogeneity, we find no evidence of a systematic difference between the British and French colonial legacies with respect to trade. This finding suggests that the apparent better performance of British ex-colonies might be instead explained by pre-colonial conditions.
References listed on IDEAS
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- Freund, Caroline & Rocha, Nadia, 2010. "What constrains Africa's exports?," WTO Staff Working Papers ERSD-2010-07, World Trade Organization (WTO), Economic Research and Statistics Division.
- J. M. C. Santos Silva & Silvana Tenreyro, 2006.
"The Log of Gravity,"
The Review of Economics and Statistics,
MIT Press, vol. 88(4), pages 641-658, November.
- Joao Santos Silva & Silvana Tenreyro, 2005. "The Log of Gravity," CEP Discussion Papers dp0701, Centre for Economic Performance, LSE.
- Santos Silva, J.M.C & Tenreyro, Silvana, 2005. "The Log of Gravity," CEPR Discussion Papers 5311, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
- Santos Silva, Joao & Tenreyro, Silvana, 2005. "The log of gravity," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 3744, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.
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