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Journal of Economic Integration 2017 December;32(4) :937-977.
DOI: https://doi.org/10.11130/jei.2017.32.4.937
Measuring Trade Integration in Africa
Antoine Bouët
Lionel Cosnard and 
David Laborde 
IFPRI, Washington D.C., US & GREThA, Bordeaux, France
AgroParisTech, Paris, France
IFPRI, Washington D.C., US
Corresponding Author: Antoine Bouët ,Tel: +1 2028625600, Fax: +1 2028625606, Email: a.bouet@cgiar.org
Copyright ©2017 Journal of Economic Integration
ABSTRACT
This paper reviews the literature on the measurement and characterization of trade integration in Africa. We offer the complete evaluation of available indicators and methodologies. The indicators include those that have recently emerged from network analysis including indicators of trade in value-added commodities. It is concluded that Africa is characterized by weak trade integration, particularly with the rest of the world. This is naturally explained by high trading costs that are evaluated by tariffs, non-tariff measures, and other trade costs, such as those related to border and documentary compliance. The region’s small number of trading partners and low product diversification are also noticeable. However, the use of more refined indicators shows that intra-African trade is relatively high when compared with trade with other continents, contrary to what can be concluded from some simple trade share indicators.

JEL Classification
F14: Empirical Studies of Trade
F15: Economic Integration
Keywords: Trade Integration | Trade Indicators | Africa
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