n Agrekon - Agri-food trade and non-tariff measures - editorial

Volume 58 Number 4
  • ISSN : 0303-1853
  • E-ISSN: 2078-0400
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The volume of non-tariff measures (NTMs) impacting on agricultural trade has increased considerably during the last decades. In particular, a large volume of NTMs has been established (and has potential trade effects) between North-South countries and even between countries in the Global South. Yet, the empirical literature provides contrasting and heterogeneous evidence on the effects of NTMs on trade: some studies support the ‘standards as catalysts’ view, while others favour the ‘standards as barriers’ explanation. A recent review by Santeramo and Lamonaca (2019a) underlines the large heterogeneity in estimates, and concludes that the effects of NTMs vary across types of NTM, proxies used for NTMs, levels of detail of studies, and that the estimated effects may differ due to different methodological approaches and publication processes. This special issue is dedicated to topics related to the relationships between agri-food trade and NTMs, with particular emphasis on how NTMs influence trade between African countries, for which the empirical literature is very limited (cf. Gebrehiwet et al., 2007; Scheepers et al., 2007; Shepherd and Wilson, 2013, among others). The issue contains several papers (authored by scholars from well-established institutions) that analyse, by means of very diverse approaches, the impacts of NTMs on trade of African countries. In lieu of the above-mentioned heterogeneity of results, potentially driven by heterogeneity in methodologies, the variety of approaches (e.g. meta-analysis, time series models, CGE models) enable readers to appreciate the impacts of NTMs from different perspectives.

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