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On the Effects of GATT/WTO Membership on Trade: They are Positive and Large After All

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Listed:
  • Larch, Mario

    () (Department of Law and Economics, University of Bayreuth & CEPII & ifo; CESifo & GEP.)

  • Monteiro, José-Antonio

    () (World Trade Organization)

  • Piermartini, Roberta

    () (World Trade Organization)

  • Yotov, Yoto

    () (School of Economics, Drexel University & CESifo & ifo Institute & ERB-BAS)

Abstract

We capitalize on the latest developments in the empirical structural gravity literature to revisit the question of whether and how much does GATT/WTO membership affect international trade. We are the first to capture the non discriminatory nature of GATT/WTO commitments by measuring the effects of GATT/WTO membership on international trade relative to domestic sales. These unilateral effects of GATT/WTO membership are found to be large, positive, and statistically significant. We also obtain bilateral GATT/WTO estimates, which are larger than those reported in the literature. In particular, our results imply that, on average, joining GATT and/or WTO has increased trade between members by 171% and trade between member and non-member countries by about 88%. We also find that although both GATT/WTO has been effective in promoting trade between members, the WTO has been more effective in promoting trade with non-members than GATT. A battery of sensitivity experiments confirms the effectiveness of our methods and robustness of our main findings.

Suggested Citation

  • Larch, Mario & Monteiro, José-Antonio & Piermartini, Roberta & Yotov, Yoto, 2019. "On the Effects of GATT/WTO Membership on Trade: They are Positive and Large After All," School of Economics Working Paper Series 2019-4, LeBow College of Business, Drexel University.
  • Handle: RePEc:ris:drxlwp:2019_004
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Natalia Ramondo & Andrés Rodríguez-Clare & Milagro Saborío-Rodríguez, 2016. "Trade, Domestic Frictions, and Scale Effects," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 106(10), pages 3159-3184, October.
    2. Larch, Mario & Wanner, Joschka & Yotov, Yoto & Zylkin, Thomas, 2017. "The Currency Union Effect: A PPML Re-assessment with High-Dimensional Fixed Effects," School of Economics Working Paper Series 2017-7, LeBow College of Business, Drexel University.
    3. Roy, Jayjit, 2011. "Is the WTO mystery really solved?," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 113(2), pages 127-130.
    4. Subramanian, Arvind & Wei, Shang-Jin, 2007. "The WTO promotes trade, strongly but unevenly," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 72(1), pages 151-175, May.
    5. Juyoung Cheong & Do Won Kwak & Kam Ki Tang, 2014. "The WTO puzzle, multilateral resistance terms and multicollinearity," Applied Economics Letters, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 21(13), pages 928-933, September.
    6. Mario Larch & Joschka Wanner & Yoto V. Yotov & Thomas Zylkin, 2017. "The Currency Union Effect: A PPML Re-assessment with High-Dimensional Fixed Effects," CESifo Working Paper Series 6464, CESifo Group Munich.
    7. Dai, Mian & Yotov, Yoto & Zylkin, Thomas, 2013. "On the Trade-diversion Effects of Free Trade Agreements," School of Economics Working Paper Series 2013-3, LeBow College of Business, Drexel University, revised 15 Sep 2014.
    8. Delina E. Agnosteva & James E. Anderson & Yoto V. Yotov, 2014. "Intra-national Trade Costs: Measurement and Aggregation," NBER Working Papers 19872, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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    More about this item

    Keywords

    GATT/WTO; International Trade; Domestic Sales; Structural Gravity;

    JEL classification:

    • F13 - International Economics - - Trade - - - Trade Policy; International Trade Organizations
    • F14 - International Economics - - Trade - - - Empirical Studies of Trade
    • F16 - International Economics - - Trade - - - Trade and Labor Market Interactions

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