News Highlights

Seminar by Prof. Saikat Sinha Roy

‘Does WTO improve Market Access? May be, but with maturity,’
A seminar titled ‘Does WTO improve Market Access? May be, but with maturity,’ by Professor Saikat Sinharoy, was held at the Joan Robinson hall at CDS on 5 July, 2018. Professor Saikat Sinharoy is Professor and Coordinator, Department of Economics, at Jadavpur University, Kolkata.

Abstract: The disagreement among the international trade economists on the impact of WTO on world trade growth has remained an important question since the formation of the institution. The finding of insignificant effect of WTO in promoting world trade by Rose (2004a) has been challenged by number of studies like Subramanian and Wei (2007), Tomz et al. (2007), Helpman et al. (2008), among others, with the substantial impact on world trade growth. This study investigates whether WTO membership aids trade growth in an extended gravity model framework using a dataset of 200 exporters and 234 importers. Along with extended gravity variables the study uses trade facilitating infrastructure, and tariff and non-tariff variables for estimating the model. The results show that the sole effect of WTO membership is crucial in enhancing market access along with regional trade agreements and preferential trade arrangements. The impact increases with the maturity of the institution.