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Informal export barriers and poverty

Listed author(s):
  • Porto, Guido G.

The author investigates the poverty impacts of informal export barriers like transport costs, cumbersome customs practices, costly regulations, and bribes. He models these informal barriers as export taxes that distort the efficient allocation of resources. In low-income agricultural economies, this distortion lowers wages and household agricultural income, thereby leading to higher poverty. The author investigates the poverty impacts of improving export procedures in Moldova. This is a unique case study: poverty is widespread (half of the Moldovan population lives in poverty), the country is very open and relies on agricultural exports for growth, formal trade barriers are fairly liberalized, and informal export barriers are common and widespread. The author finds that improving export practices would benefit the average Moldovan household across the whole income distribution. For example, halving informal export barriers would cause poverty to decline from 48.3 percent of the population to between 43.3 and 45.5 percent, potentially lifting 100,000-180,000 individuals out of poverty.

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Paper provided by The World Bank in its series Policy Research Working Paper Series with number 3354.

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Date of creation: 01 Jul 2004
Handle: RePEc:wbk:wbrwps:3354
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  1. Edmonds, Eric V., 2008. "Child Labor," Handbook of Development Economics, Elsevier.
  2. James E. Anderson & Eric van Wincoop, 2004. "Trade Costs," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 42(3), pages 691-751, September.
  3. Attanasio, Orazio & Goldberg, Pinelopi K. & Pavcnik, Nina, 2004. "Trade reforms and wage inequality in Colombia," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 74(2), pages 331-366, August.
  4. Koujianou Goldberg, Pinelopi & Pavcnik, Nina, 2003. "The response of the informal sector to trade liberalization," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 72(2), pages 463-496, December.
  5. Benjamin, Dwayne, 1992. "Household Composition, Labor Markets, and Labor Demand: Testing for Separation in Agricultural Household Models," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 60(2), pages 287-322, March.
  6. Jed Friedman & James Levinsohn, 2002. "The Distributional Impacts of Indonesia's Financial Crisis on Household Welfare: A "Rapid Response" Methodology," World Bank Economic Review, World Bank Group, vol. 16(3), pages 397-423, December.
  7. Linda S. Goldberg & Joseph Tracy, 2001. "Exchange rates and wages," Staff Reports 116, Federal Reserve Bank of New York.
  8. Deaton, Angus, 1989. "Rice Prices and Income Distribution in Thailand: A Non-parametric Analysis," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 99(395), pages 1-37, Supplemen.
  9. Kloek, T, 1981. "OLS Estimation in a Model Where a Microvariable Is Explained by Aggregates and Contemporaneous Disturbances Are Equicorrelated," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 49(1), pages 205-207, January.
  10. Grossman, Gene M & Levinsohn, James A, 1989. "Import Competition and the Stock Market Return to Capital," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 79(5), pages 1065-1087, December.
  11. Porto, Guido G., 2006. "Using survey data to assess the distributional effects of trade policy," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 70(1), pages 140-160, September.
  12. Edmonds, Eric V. & Pavcnik, Nina, 2005. "The effect of trade liberalization on child labor," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 65(2), pages 401-419, March.
  13. Edward E. Leamer, 1996. "In Search of Stolper-Samuelson Effects on U.S. Wages," NBER Working Papers 5427, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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