North-South Trade : Is Africa Unusual?

Author/Editor:

David T. Coe ; Alexander W. Hoffmaister

Publication Date:

June 1, 1998

Electronic Access:

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Disclaimer: This Working Paper should not be reported as representing the views of the IMF.The views expressed in this Working Paper are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily represent those of the IMF or IMF policy. Working Papers describe research in progress by the author(s) and are published to elicit comments and to further debate

Summary:

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.

Series:

Working Paper No. 98/94

Subject:

Frequency:

Biannually

English

Publication Date:

June 1, 1998

ISBN/ISSN:

9781451851694/1018-5941

Stock No:

WPIEA0941998

Format:

Paper

Pages:

27

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