The Economic Impact of Export Restrictions on Raw Materials

image of The Economic Impact of Export Restrictions on Raw Materials

Export restrictions on raw materials are applied to achieve a number of policy objectives. However, they can have a significant and negative impact on the efficient allocation of resources, international trade, and the competitiveness and development of industries in both exporting and importing countries.  

By diverting exports to domestic markets, export restrictions raise prices for foreign consumers and importers. At the same time, by reducing domestic prices in the applying countries and increasing global uncertainty concerning future prices, export restrictions negatively affect investment, thus potentially reducing the overall supply of raw materials in the long term. In view of existing alternative policy tools that have a different impact on trade, the effectiveness of export restrictions to achieve stated policy objectives should be carefully reviewed.  

This publication presents a selection of papers discussed at the OECD Workshop on Raw Materials, held in Paris in October 2009. This workshop was organised in response to the growing concern on the use of export restrictions on raw materials, particularly by emerging economies.


The Economics of Export Taxes in the Context of Food Security

Rising global food prices during 2006-08 contributed to high food price inflation in many countries with the consequent distributional impact of rising food prices that created serious concern in several countries. In response, several governments applied export taxes to limit exports and thereby increase domestic supplies at low prices. This chapter provides a theoretical and empirical background to better understand the use of export taxes when these are applied towards maintaining food security. The analysis emphasizes the negative impact of such measures on the welfare of trade partners and the effects of non-cooperative trade policies.


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