Lorenzo Rotunno, Pierre-Louis Vézina, Zheng Wang, 14 October 2012

The surge in African apparel exports that followed the launch of new US trade preferences in 2000 gave hope that African industrialisation was around the corner. Ten years down the road, the success was all but forgotten. This column shows this is because US trade policies inadvertently turned Africa into a temporary trade corridor for China.

Jaime de Melo, Alberto Portugal-Perez, 29 May 2012

Joining a global supply chain is one of the few ways for low-income countries to industrialise in today’s competitive market. Rules on their use of imported fabric therefore have important consequences for development. This column exploits a quasi-experimental situation to show that the gains from rich nations applying more relaxed rules on imported inputs are huge – six times greater than the simple act of removing tariffs.

Garth Frazer, Johannes Van Biesebroeck, 07 August 2007

Recent research shows that the much-discussed African problems – poor infrastructure, poor public services, etc. – did not stop Africa from boosting its exports when the US lowered it tariffs and limited other subtle trade barriers. Other OECD countries should re-consider their trade policies towards Africa in this light.

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