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By Lawrence E. Hinkle and Keiko Kubota


T his paper presents an intermediate methodology for evaluating trade regimes in Sub-Saharan Africa. The methodology permits a quantitative instrument-by-instrument assessment of the conventional border instruments of trade policy. Measuring the impact of each policy instrument on the average prices of import-competing and export goods, we arrive at an estimate of the B index of antiexport bias developed by Bhagwati (1978) and Krueger (1978). The B index is used as a summary measure for an overall assessment of the trade policies of 13 sample countries. The paper finds that, although the best practice countries in our sample had not yet caught up with all of the best practices observed elsewhere in the developing world, “first generation trade reforms ” in the 1990s had led to significant liberalization. Despite progress in rationalizing tariff structures, however, lowering rates and eliminating quantitative restrictions, trade policies maintain a bias in favor of importcompeting activities over exports. The paper also presents a comparison with the IMF and the African Competitiveness Report’s methodologies for assessing trade policies. Volume 1 develops the above methodology and presents the findings for the thirteen sample countries. Volume 2 provides background notes on various points concerning the application of the methodology and the sample countries

Year: 2003
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