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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:Help or hindrance? The impact of harmonised standards on African exports
Authors:Czubala, WitoldISNI
Shepherd, Ben
Wilson, John S.ISNI
Periodical:Journal of African Economies
Geographic term:Africa
international trade
export promotion
External link:https://jae.oxfordjournals.org/content/18/5/711.full.pdf
Abstract:The authors test the hypothesis that product standards harmonized to de facto international standards are less trade restrictive than ones that are not. To do this, they construct a new database of European Union (EU) product standards. They identify standards that are aligned with International Organisation for Standardization (ISO) standards (as a proxy for de facto international norms). They use a sample-selection gravity model to examine the impact of EU standards on African textiles and clothing exports, a sector of particular development interest. They find robust evidence that non-harmonized standards reduce African exports of these products. EU standards which are harmonized to ISO standards are less trade-restricting. The results suggest that efforts to promote African exports of manufactures may need to be complemented by measures to reduce the cost impacts of product standards, including international harmonization. In addition, efforts to harmonize national standards with international norms, including those through the World Trade Organization Technical Barriers to Trade Agreement, promise concrete benefits through trade expansion. Bibliogr., notes, ref., sum. [Journal abstract]