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Protecting health or protecting imports? Evidence from EU non-tariff measures

Fatima Kareem, Inmaculada Martínez-Zarzoso and Bernhard Brümmer

International Review of Economics & Finance, 2018, vol. 53, issue C, 185-202

Abstract: Non-tariff measures such as food safety standards are aimed at protecting consumers' health but may also be used as protectionism tool to limit imports. This study investigates the protectionist intent of EU food safety standards using a sample of EU food imports from African countries. We formalized protectionism by comparing EU standards to the internationally scientific benchmarks. Our results support the hypothesis that heavily import dependent sectors are less protected. Further analysis shows no substantial rise in the usage of these measures as protectionism tool during the period of financial crisis.

Keywords: Trade protectionism; Non-tariff measures; Food safety standards; Food exports; European Union (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: F13 F14 L15 P16 Q17 Q18 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2018
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Handle: RePEc:eee:reveco:v:53:y:2018:i:c:p:185-202