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Maritime transport costs and port efficiency

Author: Ximena Clark; David Dollar; Alejandro Micco; World Bank. Policy Research Dissemination Center.; World Bank. Development Research Group. Macroeconomics and Growth.
Publisher: [Washington, D.C.] : World Bank, [2002]
Series: Policy research working papers (Online), 2781.
Edition/Format:   eBook : EnglishView all editions and formats
Summary:
Transport costs have increased their relative importance as a barrier to trade. Distance, containerization, volume exported, and, most important, the level of seaport efficiency, are important determinants of transport costs. Port efficiency is not only associated with infrastructure, but also with the existence of organized crime and excessive regulation. Recent literature has emphasized the importance of transport  Read more...
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Genre/Form: Econometric models
Material Type: Internet resource
Document Type: Internet Resource, Computer File
All Authors / Contributors: Ximena Clark; David Dollar; Alejandro Micco; World Bank. Policy Research Dissemination Center.; World Bank. Development Research Group. Macroeconomics and Growth.
OCLC Number: 49926437
Notes: Title from title screen as viewed on June 3, 2002.
"The World Bank Development Research Group, Macroeconomics and Growth"--Cover.
"February 2002."
Description: 1 online resource.
Details: Mode of access: World Wide Web.
Series Title: Policy research working papers (Online), 2781.
Responsibility: by Ximena Clark, David Dollar, Alejandro Micco.

Abstract:

Transport costs have increased their relative importance as a barrier to trade. Distance, containerization, volume exported, and, most important, the level of seaport efficiency, are important determinants of transport costs. Port efficiency is not only associated with infrastructure, but also with the existence of organized crime and excessive regulation. Recent literature has emphasized the importance of transport costs and infrastructure in explaining trade, access to markets, and increases in per capita income. For most Latin American countries transport costs are a greater barrier to U.S. markets than import tariffs. Clark, Dollar, and Micco investigate the determinants of the costs of shipping to the United States using a large database (more than 300,000 observations a year) on shipments of products at the six-digit level of the Harmonized System of classification from different ports around the world. They find that distance and containerization matter. They find that the efficiency of ports is also important. Improving the efficiency of a port from the 25th to the 75th percentile reduces shipping costs by 12 percent. (On average, having bad ports is equivalent to being 60 percent farther away from markets.) Inefficient ports also increase handling costs, which are part of shipping costs. Finally, the authors try to explain variations in port efficiency. They find that the variations are linked to excessive regulation, the prevalence of organized crime, and the general condition of the country's infrastructure. This paper--a product of Macroeconomics and Growth, Development Research Group--is part of a larger effort in the group to understand the link between competitiveness and transport costs. The authors may be contacted at xclark@worldbank.org, ddollar@worldbank.org, or alejandromi@iadb.org.

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