Click here for search results
On the conservation of distance in international trade
 
Author:Berthelon, Matias; Freund, Caroline; Collection Title:Policy, Research working paper ; no WPS 3293
Country:World; Date Stored:2004/06/15
Document Date:2004/05/01Document Type:Policy Research Working Paper
SubTopics:Environmental Economics & Policies; Common Carriers Industry; Economic Theory & Research; Standards and Technical Regulations; Trade Policy; Free TradeLanguage:English
Region:The World RegionReport Number:WPS3293
Volume No:1 of 1  

Summary: The volume of world trade has grown more than twice as fast as real world income since 1980. Surprisingly, the effect of distance on trade has increased during this period. It could be that countries are trading greater volumes of goods that are highly sensitive to distance. An alternative explanation is that distance has become more import for a significant share of goods. Using highly disaggregated bilateral trade data, the authors find that adjustment in the composition of trade has not influenced the way in which distance affects trade. In contrast, for about 25 percent of industries, distance has become more important. This implies that the increased distance sensitivity of trade is a result of a change in relative trade costs that affects many industries, as opposed to a shift to more distance-sensitive products. The authors also find that homogeneous products are twice as likely to have become more distance sensitive as compared with differentiated goods. This is consistent with the hypothesis that falling search costs, resulting from improvements in transport and communications, are relatively more important for differentiated goods. The results offer no evidence of the "death of distance." Rather, they suggest that distance-related relative trade costs have remained unchanged or shifted in favor of proximate markets.

Official Documents
Official, scanned versions of documents (may include signatures, etc.)
File TypeDescriptionFile Size (mb)
PDF 32 pagesOfficial version*2.24 (approx.)
TextText version**
How To Order
Light-Weight Documents
Lighter (less MB) documents which may or may not be the final, official version
File TypeDescriptionFile Size (mb)
PDF 32 pagesWPS32930.21

* The official version is derived from scanning the final, paper copy of the document and is the official,
archived version including all signatures, charts, etc.
** The text version is the OCR text of the final scanned version and is not an accurate representation of the final text.
It is provided solely to benefit users with slow connectivity.



Permanent URL for this page: http://go.worldbank.org/ODDUEKILZ1