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Regional Integration in Latin America

Maria E. de Boyrie and Mordechai Kreinin. 2016. Global Economy Journal. Volume 16, Issue 2, Pages 293–311, ISSN (Online) 1553-5304, ISSN (Print) 2194-5659, DOI: 10.1515/gej-2015-0066, May 2016

Monday 13 June 2016, by Carlos San Juan

This paper assesses the welfare effects of integration in Latin America. It estimates trade creation and diversion of: 1) integration of the four Mercosur countries (Brazil, Argentina, Paraguay and Uruguay) and 2) amalgamation of Mercosur with the Andean group (Bolivia, Colombia, Ecuador and Peru). The method used to proxy trade creation is the change in total imports of a country from before to after integration, while trade diversion is proxied by the change in the country’s external imports between the two periods. A “control country” approach is used to hold constant the effects on imports of factors other than integration, such as income and price changes. With some exceptions Latin American integration was found beneficial to welfare in that trade creation exceeded trade diversion.

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