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Landlocked or policy locked ? how services trade protection deepens economic isolation

Author

Listed:
  • Borchert, Ingo
  • Gootiiz, Batshur
  • Grover, Arti
  • Mattoo, Aaditya

Abstract

A new cross-country database on services policy reveals a perverse pattern: many landlocked countries restrict trade in the very services that connect them with the rest of the world. On average, telecommunications and air-transport policies are significantly more restrictive in landlocked countries than elsewhere. The phenomenon is most starkly visible in Sub-Saharan Africa and is associated with lower levels of political accountability. This paper finds evidence that these policies lead to more concentrated market structures and more limited access to services than these countries would otherwise have, even after taking into account the influence of geography and incomes, and the possibility that policy is endogenous. Even moderate liberalization in these sectors could lead to an increase of cellular subscriptions by 7 percentage points and a 20-percent increase in the number of flights. Policies in other countries, industrial and developing alike, also limit competition in international transport services. Hence,"trade-facilitating"investments under various"aid-for-trade"initiatives are likely to earn a low return unless they are accompanied by meaningful reform in these services sectors.

Suggested Citation

  • Borchert, Ingo & Gootiiz, Batshur & Grover, Arti & Mattoo, Aaditya, 2012. "Landlocked or policy locked ? how services trade protection deepens economic isolation," Policy Research Working Paper Series 5942, The World Bank.
  • Handle: RePEc:wbk:wbrwps:5942
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Blog mentions

    As found by EconAcademics.org, the blog aggregator for Economics research:
    1. Being landlocked and making it worse
      by Economic Logician in Economic Logic on 2012-02-07 21:12:00

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    Cited by:

    1. Hoekman, Bernard, 2014. "The Bali Trade Facilitation Agreement and Rulemaking in the WTO: Milestone, Mistake or Mirage?," CEPR Discussion Papers 10212, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    2. Ingo Borchert & Batshur Gootiiz & Aaditya Mattoo, 2014. "Policy Barriers to International Trade in Services: Evidence from a New Database," World Bank Economic Review, World Bank Group, vol. 28(1), pages 162-188.
    3. Olivier Cadot & Ana Fernandes & Julien Gourdon & Aaditya Mattoo & Jaime Melo, 2014. "Evaluating Aid for Trade: A Survey of Recent Studies," The World Economy, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 37(4), pages 516-529, April.
    4. Alessandro Barattieri & Ingo Borchert & Aaditya Mattoo, 2016. "Cross-border mergers and acquisitions in services: The role of policy and industrial structure," Canadian Journal of Economics, Canadian Economics Association, vol. 49(4), pages 1470-1501, November.
    5. Arvind Subramanian & Martin Kessler, 2013. "The Hyperglobalization of Trade and Its Future," Working Paper Series WP13-6, Peterson Institute for International Economics.
    6. Lahiri, Bidisha & Masjidi, Feroz K., 2012. "Landlocked Countries: A Way to Integrate with Coastal Economies," Journal of Economic Integration, Center for Economic Integration, Sejong University, vol. 27, pages 505-519.
    7. Jean-François Arvis & Yann Duval & Ben Shepherd & Chorthip Utoktham, 2012. "Trade Costs in the Developing World:1995 – 2010," Working Papers 12112, Asia-Pacific Research and Training Network on Trade (ARTNeT), an initiative of UNESCAP and IDRC, Canada..
    8. Riham Ahmed Ezzat & Nora Aboushady, 2015. "Do Telecom Restrictive Policies Matter for Telecom Performance? Evidence from MENA Countries," Working Papers 949, Economic Research Forum, revised Sep 2015.

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    Keywords

    Transport Economics Policy&Planning; Markets and Market Access; Public Sector Corruption&Anticorruption Measures; Economic Theory&Research; ICT Policy and Strategies;

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