Make Trade Not War?

43 Pages Posted: 7 Oct 2005

See all articles by Philippe Martin

Philippe Martin

Ecole Nationale des Ponts et Chaussées (ENPC) - Centre d'Enseignement et de Recherche en Analyse Socio-Economique (CERAS); Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR)

Thierry Mayer

Université Paris I Panthéon-Sorbonne - TEAM; Ecole Nationale des Ponts et Chaussées (ENPC) - Centre d'Enseignement et de Recherche en Analyse Socio-Economique (CERAS); CEPII, Centre d'Etudes Prospectives et d'Info. Internationales, Paris; Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR)

Mathias Thoenig

Ecole Nationale des Ponts et Chaussées (ENPC) - Centre d'Enseignement et de Recherche en Analyse Socio-Economique (CERAS); Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR); University of Geneva - Department of Political Economics

Date Written: September 2005

Abstract

This paper analyzes theoretically and empirically the relationship between trade and war. We show that the intuition that trade promotes peace is only partially true even in a model where trade is beneficial to all, war reduces trade and leaders take into account the costs of war. When war can occur because of the presence of asymmetric information, the probability of escalation is indeed lower for countries that trade more bilaterally because of the opportunity cost associated with the loss of trade gains. However, countries more open to global trade have a higher probability of war because multilateral trade openness decreases bilateral dependence to any given country. Using a theoretically-based econometric model, we test our predictions on a large dataset of military conflicts in the period 1948-2001. We find strong evidence for the contrasting effects of bilateral and multilateral trade. Our empirical results also confirm our theoretical prediction that multilateral trade openness increases more the probability of war between proximate countries. This may explain why military conflicts have become more localized and less global over time.

Keywords: Globalization, trade, war

JEL Classification: F12, F15

Suggested Citation

Martin, Philippe and Mayer, Thierry and Thoenig, Mathias, Make Trade Not War? (September 2005). CEPR Discussion Paper No. 5218. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=822824

Philippe Martin (Contact Author)

Ecole Nationale des Ponts et Chaussées (ENPC) - Centre d'Enseignement et de Recherche en Analyse Socio-Economique (CERAS) ( email )

28, rue des Saints-Peres
75007 Paris
France
+33 1 4313 6385 (Phone)
+33 1 4313 6382 (Fax)

Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR)

London
United Kingdom

Thierry Mayer

Université Paris I Panthéon-Sorbonne - TEAM ( email )

106-112 boulevard de l'hôpital
Cedex 13 Paris, P75647
France

HOME PAGE: http://team.univ-paris1.fr/teamperso/mayer/thierry.htm

Ecole Nationale des Ponts et Chaussées (ENPC) - Centre d'Enseignement et de Recherche en Analyse Socio-Economique (CERAS) ( email )

28, rue des Saints-Peres
75007 Paris
France
+33 1 4407 8267 (Phone)
+33 1 4407 8267 (Fax)

CEPII, Centre d'Etudes Prospectives et d'Info. Internationales, Paris ( email )

9 Rue Georges Pitard
Paris Cedex 15, F-75015
France

HOME PAGE: http://www.cepii.fr/anglaisgraph/pagepers/mayer.htm

Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR)

London
United Kingdom

Mathias Thoenig

Ecole Nationale des Ponts et Chaussées (ENPC) - Centre d'Enseignement et de Recherche en Analyse Socio-Economique (CERAS) ( email )

28, rue des Saints-Peres
75007 Paris
France
+33 1 4313 6380 (Phone)
+33 1 4313 6382 (Fax)

Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR)

London
United Kingdom

University of Geneva - Department of Political Economics ( email )

40 boulevard du Pont-d'Arve
Geneva 4, CH-1211
Switzerland
+41 22 379 8274 (Phone)
+41 22 379 8293 (Fax)

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