North-South Trade: Is Africa Unusual?

27 Pages Posted: 15 Feb 2006

See all articles by David T. Coe

David T. Coe

International Monetary Fund (IMF); National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

Alexander W. Hoffmaister

International Monetary Fund (IMF) - Research Department

Date Written: June 1998

Abstract

We estimate a gravity model to address the question of whether Africa`s bilateral trade with industrial countries is "unusual" compared with other developing country regions. Our main finding is that the unusually low level of African trade is explained by economic size, geographical distance, and population. This result holds after controlling for a country`s access to the sea, composition of exports, linguistic ties with industrial countries, and trade policies. If anything, the average African country tends to "overtrade" compared with developing countries in other regions, although the degree to which Africa overtrades has steadily declined over the past two-and-one-half decades.

Keywords: Africa, gravity model, trade

JEL Classification: C1, F1, O4

Suggested Citation

Coe, David T. and Hoffmaister, Alexander W., North-South Trade: Is Africa Unusual? (June 1998). IMF Working Paper No. 98/94, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=882608

David T. Coe (Contact Author)

International Monetary Fund (IMF) ( email )

700 19th Street NW
Washington, DC 20431
United States

National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

1050 Massachusetts Avenue
Cambridge, MA 02138
United States

Alexander W. Hoffmaister

International Monetary Fund (IMF) - Research Department ( email )

700 19th Street NW
Washington, DC 20431
United States

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