Munich Personal RePEc Archive

Economic integration and the two margins of trade: the impact of the Barcelona Process on North African countries’ exports

Bensassi, Sami and Márquez-Ramos, Laura and Martínez-Zarzoso, Inmaculada (2010): Economic integration and the two margins of trade: the impact of the Barcelona Process on North African countries’ exports.

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Abstract

According to recently developed models of trade with imperfect competition and heterogeneous firms, lower trade costs increase bilateral trade not only through a rise in the mean value of individual shipments (the intensive margin of trade), but also through an increase in the number of exporting firms (the extensive margin of trade). The main aim of this paper is to provide new empirical evidence of the effects of the Euro-Mediterranean (EuroMed) agreements on both margins of trade. Using highly disaggregated export data for four North African countries (Algeria, Egypt, Morocco and Tunisia) and two Middle East countries (Jordan, Lebanon) over the period from 1995 to 2008, we estimate the impact of the EuroMed agreements on both trade margins and we provide empirical evidence of the validity of the theoretical predictions. Results indicate that only the North African countries enjoyed a positive and significant effect of the Barcelona process on their exports to the four biggest countries in the European Union.

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