Covid-19 and International Trade: Evidence from New Zealand

11 Pages Posted: 14 Feb 2022

See all articles by Volker Nitsch

Volker Nitsch

Technical University of Darmstadt


The impact of the Covid-19 pandemic on international trade varies along several dimensions, including the type of product, the size of firm and over time. In this note, I provide evidence of systematic variation in the trade response to the pandemic along another, previously unexplored dimension, the mode of transportation. Analyzing daily data from New Zealand, I find that the value of seaborne exports and imports increases relative to shipments by air during pandemic lockdowns. While this finding is consistent with many explanations, including the sensitivity of trade to external finance, it generally provides support for the importance of frictions on the supply side.

Keywords: coronavirus, pandemic, lockdown, restriction, shipments

Suggested Citation

Nitsch, Volker, Covid-19 and International Trade: Evidence from New Zealand. Available at SSRN: or

Volker Nitsch (Contact Author)

Technical University of Darmstadt ( email )

Universitaets- und Landesbibliothek Darmstadt
Magdalenenstrasse 8
Darmstadt, Hesse D-64289

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