OECD Economics Department Working Papers

Working papers from the Economics Department of the OECD that cover the full range of the Department’s work including the economic situation, policy analysis and projections; fiscal policy, public expenditure and taxation; and structural issues including ageing, growth and productivity, migration, environment, human capital, housing, trade and investment, labour markets, regulatory reform, competition, health, and other issues.

The views expressed in these papers are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect those of the OECD or of the governments of its member countries.

English, French

Empirical Research on Trade Liberalisation with Imperfect Competition

A Survey

Orthodox trade theory rests on a number of unrealistic assumptions which include, among others, constant returns to scale in production and perfect competition in product and factor markets. This has led many commentators to express strong skepticism about the policy conclusions flowing from the orthodox framework. In response to these concerns, a rapidly-growing literature has developed over the past decade which incorporates more realistic features of the trading system such as imperfect competition, increasing returns to scale and product differentiation.

This paper presents a review of the empirical research on the "new trade" theories. Section II outlines briefly the theoretical framework for the empirical research. The results from a series of partial and general equilibrium studies are surveyed in Section III. The final section suggests some directions for future work in this area ...


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