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Bilateral Trade Performance in West Africa: A Gravity Model Estimation

Evans Osabuohien (), Uchenna R. Efobi, John T. Odebiyi, Oluyemi O. Fayomi and Adeleke Salami ()

African Development Review, 2019, vol. 31, issue 1, 1-14

Abstract: This study provides empirical insights on the functioning of regional trade agreements within the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) by identifying bilateral trade barriers that affect the extent of trade flows among member countries. Also, it highlights some trade barrier indicators that are rarely covered in extant studies, such as the multilateral resistance term, the extent of trade complementarity, and the presence of economic integration agreements among ECOWAS member countries. We then provide augmented gravity model estimation on the determinants of bilateral trade in the region. We find, among other things, that trade complementarity had a positive and significant effect on bilateral trade within the sub‐region region. Other important determinants of intra‐regional trade include multilateral trade resistance and economic integration agreements — meaning that countries with some kind of agreement like the West African Economic and Monetary Union (WAEMU) tend to trade more among themselves than other member countries.

Date: 2019
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