Impact of ECOWAS Common External Tariffs on Food Security and Nutrition in West Africa

Following the 2008 food crisis, West African governments have sought to achieve food security. Regional market integration is one element of this food security policy thrust. The Economic Community of West African countries (ECOWAS) is engaged in the creation of a Customs Union. Member countries negotiated a common external tariff (CET) currently under implementation. The CET is organized into five different tariff bands of 0, 5, 10, 20, and 35 percent to accommodate the large variations in protection granted across the region. The implementation of the CET represents a challenge to many individual ECOWAS countries since it may generate significant and potentially destabilizing welfare distribution impacts. The objective of this study is to evaluate the impact of ECOWAS CET on the rice sectors and the food security situation of member countries, and the spillover effects on the international market. Rice has become a dominant food staple and consequently West Africa has become the largest global rice-importing region, therefore it is important to understand likely impacts of regional integration on this sector. We use a supply-chain, partial, spatial equilibrium model of the global rice economy calibrated to the prevailing market conditions for the period 2013-2015. The findings highlight the impact of the CET on rice production, consumption, bilateral trade, and consumer, producer, and government welfare at the regional and global level, and the potential policy implications of such changes.

Issue Date:
Jan 17 2018
Publication Type:
Conference Paper/ Presentation
Record Identifier:

 Record created 2018-01-17, last modified 2018-01-22

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