On Developing Countries’ Market Access Conditions in Regional Trade Agreements

28 Pages Posted: 17 Jan 2018 Last revised: 16 Jun 2018

Date Written: November 1, 2017


Have regional trade agreements (RTAs) improved market access conditions for developing countries? Using disaggregated panel data for a sample of 45 developing country exporters, 60 export destinations, and the period between 1991 and 2015, it is shown that this question can generally be answered in the affirmative. On closer inspection, however, there is considerable variation depending on the choice of integration partners and economic sectors. While the former applies mainly to African economies in South-South agreements and developing countries engaging formally with the European Free Trade Association (EFTA) or the Republic of Korea, leading industrialized nations are moreover reluctant to grant improved market access to developing countries in RTAs especially in capital-intensive (high-productivity) manufacturing sectors.

Keywords: Tariff margin, regional economic integration, South-South integration, North-South integration, panel data

JEL Classification: F13, F14, F15

Suggested Citation

Stender, Frederik, On Developing Countries’ Market Access Conditions in Regional Trade Agreements (November 1, 2017). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3100066 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3100066

Frederik Stender (Contact Author)

Ruhr University of Bochum ( email )

Faculty of Management and Economics
Chair of International Economics
Bochum, 44780

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