Centre for the Analysis of Regional Integration at Sussex (CARIS)


CARIS has many years of experience in undertaking an extremely wide range of studies, for important institutions as the European Commission, DFID, World Bank, as well as several other organisations on issues of trade policy.

You can find examples of projects undertaken in recent years below; please use the following links to jump to a project:

Economic Integration in South East Asia and Impact on the EU

  • Client: DG-Trade, European Commission Framework Contract TRADE/07/A2
  • Partner: CASE
  • Date: 2010/2011
  • Final report [PDF]

This project looks at the impacts of economic integration in the South East Asia especially ASEAN and the prospects of ASEAN Economic Community on EU exports and its competitiveness in the region. It applies partial as well as general equilibrium models to assess the impacts relevant RTAs on the EU exports to the region. It also examines and analyses the provisions in the RTAS such as services, investment, competition, government procurement and any others provisions which may appears in the agreements.

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Mid-term Evaluation of the EU's Generalised System of Preferences

The study examined the EU GSP schemes – GSP, GSP+ and EBA and the impacts of GSP on economic growth and development by encouraging the trade of developing countries, especially those most in need. It uses previously unavailable highly detailed 10-digit data on trade and tariffs for any given product, country and year, distinguishing between the regime of entry to the EU. The methods employed in this report range from detailed descriptive data, formal econometrics focussing on the estimation of price margins, the determinants of utilisation rates, as well as the determinants of bilateral trade flows, CGE modelling of the likely impact of the GSP schemes, case studies, and the use of secondary sources. The full report can be found here

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Review of EPA Negotiations

  • Client: DFID
  • Partner: IDS
  • Date: 2009/2010

This project for DFID aimed at analysing the negotiating process and costs of the EPAs and their impact on development. The project undertook a general review of these issues, complemented with case studies from Ethiopia, Nigeria and the Dominican Republic.

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Innocent Bystanders – Implication of an EU-India Free Trade Agreement for Excluded Countries

  • Client: Commonwealth Secretariat
  • Date: 2009-2010

This project is commissioned by the Commonwealth Secretariat and deals with the possible impacts of an EU-India FTA on the excluded countries in goods as well as in services. The usual approach to calibrating the effects of an FTA on excluded countries is to focus on 'trade diversion' whereby, as a result of offering India preferential access to the EU market, the EU purchasers switch from importing from an efficient excluded country to importing from (a less efficient) India and similarly for Indian preferences offered to the EU. The CARIS report adds and quantifies two further concepts – trade re-orientation and terms of trade. With trade re-orientation EU preferences and tariff cuts towards Indian suppliers switch trade towards India (and vice versa), but this time there are no efficiency losses because the excluded country was initially supplying the EU not because of its efficiency but because it already had a preferential trade deal. The EU-India FTA 'undoes' that previous act of trade diversion and so saves the EU real resources. For the excluded country, however, the result is just the same as trade diversion – it loses sales. With terms of trade, the prices of excluded countries' exports may be affected due to EU-India preferences to each other. This may be more significant than a decline in exports per se because it implies earning less on every unit of exports, rather than just losing marginal units of exports. The main conclusion of the study is that non-South Asian countries overall will suffer little by way of negative shock from the trade diversion or re-orientation in either Indian or the EU market. However, particular sectors and the terms of trade for specific goods may suffer. For India's immediate neighbouring countries, they have significant shares of exports exposed in one or both markets and may face a very significant increase in competition from the EU in Indian market.

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Assess the Impact of Trade Policies on Pakistan's Preferential Access to the EU Market

  • Client: DG Trade European Commission
  • Date: 2008
  • Partners: Dr. Anwar Chishti, Dr. Muhammad Zulfiqar and Dr. Zareen Naqvi

This report commissioned by the European Commission studies the impact of EU trade policies in South Asia on Pakistan's market access to the EU and on Pakistan's overall trade performance. It includes quantitative analysis of the EU-India FTA, the Pakistan-China FTA, the Pakistan-Malaysia FTA and the implementation of SAFTA and their impacts on Pakistan; discussions of the impact of the EU's GSP scheme(s) on Pakistan; examinations of the importance of Pakistani domestic regulatory reform for trade performance in relation to the EU and the rest of the world. The overall conclusion of the report is that the aggregate direct impact of the EU's (third party) trade policies in the region, on Pakistan's access to the EU is unlikely to be substantial. This conclusion emerges from CGE modelling as well as from the detailed quantitative and qualitative analyses. However, the report points out that the preceding needs to be qualified in two regards. First, it is possible and indeed likely, that particular industries or segments may indeed be affected by the changing preference margins implied by the EU's trade policies. Second, it is possible that there may be longer term "dynamic" effects from changes in investment flows and service provision arising from the EU's trade policies and most notably with India which could change the relative attractiveness of doing business with one partner rather than another. This however, is clearly an issue closely linked to regulatory procedures and possible barriers within Pakistan and it is not simply an issue of EU trade policy.

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Qualified Market Access

  • Client: DG Trade European Commission Framework Contract TRADE/07/A2
  • Date: 2008
  • Parteners: J. Mathis; K. Dawar (University of Amsterdam)
  • Final report [PDF]

The objective of this report is to make a contribution to the ongoing reflection on the EU's policy options with respect to QMA and the legal, economic and administrative implications of these options.

Part I (definitions and scope):

  1. Clarification of the notion of QMA with respect to adjacent concepts (PPM, SPS, etc.);
  2. The legal, economic and administrative aspects of QMA from a trade policy perspective;
  3. Process issues: environmental and social issues only;
  4. Aspects of production processes: biochemical and environmental aspects, labour conditions, animal welfare.

Part II (legal issues):

  1. Respective legal and practical advantages or disadvantages of public versus private approaches, or optimal mixes of the two.
  2. WTO compatibility: gradual approach based on existing WTO law, as clarified in the past jurisprudence and potentially emerging in future cases versus the chances for a big-bang change of the existing multilateral rules through negotiations.
  3. Extra-territoriality of verification and controls, whether through certification or other tools, in relation to both governmental regulation and private standards.
  4. Consider the role of existing and possible future international agreements concluded outside the WTO framework.

Part III (economic issues):

  1. The economics of product quality standards compared to the economics of process quality standards: costs and benefits of process differentiation in like end products (but un-like production processes). Competitiveness aspects.
  2. Global public goods versus local collective preferences. The extent of convergence between consumer and producer preferences, when both are living in different economies: how do developing countries perceive these efforts and what are the potential costs and benefits for them?
  3. Market differentiations: the costs and benefits for producers and consumers of private voluntary versus public enforced standards. Collective versus private preferences (or free choice versus minimum standards).
  4. An empirical estimation of potential costs and benefits for the EU / for developing countries, based on examples.
  5. Possible trade policy instruments (only for enforced standards): tariffs, SPS/TBT, other. Should international instruments or would EU domestic regulation of production process methods be sufficient? (labelling, certification).

Part IV (administrative issues):

  1. Administrative costs and practical feasibility of different policy instruments.
  2. Transaction costs.
  3. Extra-territorial verification.
  4. Cooperation between administrations in importing and exporting countries.
  5. Acceptability for developing countries and public acceptance for EU consumers.

The full report can be found here.

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Analysis of Trade Issues, Agreements and regional integration

  • Client: BERR-Department For Business, Enterprise & Regulatory Reform (UK)
  • Date: 2008-2009

CARIS was contracted by the Dept of Business to carry out a series of research projects, on the impact of the single market, on the needs of developing countries for advice in negotiating FTAs and the potential value of an Advisory Centre on Regional Trade agreements and on the implications for the trade system of Border carbon Adjustments. The latter generated a paper to be published in Climate Policy and ongoing collaboration with the Swedish Kommerskollegium.

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Implications for the UK of an EU-Korea Free Trade Agreement

  • Client: BERR (Department for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform) UK
  • Date: 2008

The General objective of this project is to assess the implications of the EU-Korea agreement on UK-Korea bilateral trade.

The Specific tasks of this project:

i) Identification of key traded sectors, considering differences in comparative advantage, extent of intra-industry trade, comparisons of import and export similarity – and their evolution over time. Compilation of report looking at highly disaggregated merchandise trade with particular focus on i) Automotive industry, ii) machinery/electronics ii) processed food.

ii) Construction a non-tariff barrier database. Using all the known instances of "disputes" from various sources between Korea, the UK and third countries. For each industry / sectors various diagnostic indicators are to be computed (shares of trade, Revealed Comparative Advantages, Revealed Market Access indicators, Intra-Industry trade) so as to identifying existing areas of difficulty, potential future areas, but also to provide a sense of the importance of the relevant sectors in the context of overall levels of trade and production. The database will also provide a picture of the extent to which barriers to trade are highly sector specific, or if instead the key issues are horizontal and cut across sectors. The database will classify barrier by type (eg. SPS/TBT, trade facilitations, bureaucratic obstacles etc) and will take into account services trade.

Investigation into bilateral service trade between Korea and the UK, identification of key trading sectors and assessment of performance of these in the Korean and UK markets.

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The role of Rules of Origin in the process of Euro-med integration and in the integration among the Southern Mediterranean countries

  • Client: FEMISE
  • Dates: 2007-2008
  • Partners: CEFI, France; IACE, Tunisia

The aim of this project was to consider at the sectoral level and using a gravity modelling framework, the possible impact of rules of origin on trade between the EU and the Mediterranean partner countries.

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Assessing the Potential Welfare Effects of SAARC Regional Integration

  • Client: FCO (British Foreign & Commonwealth Office)
  • Date: 2007-2008

The General objective of this project was to assess the likely impact of regional economic integration in South-Asia (SAARC region). To this end, CARIS undertook a qualitative and quantitative desk-review looking at intra and extra SAARC trade. The region was analysed as a collective and by country (Afghanistan; Bangladesh; Bhutan; India; Sri-Lanka; Maldives; Nepal; and Pakistan).

Specific Tasks:

i) Analysis of the evolution of South Asian regionalism.

ii) Assessing shallow integration at highly disaggregated product level (e.g. Summary of initial economic structure, Trade structure and trade policy overview, Extent of similarity in exports, production and cost structures across different suppliers;

iii) The research will provide a substantive contribution to our understanding of:

The scope for future trade between South Asian countries (based on existing trade flows, production structures and how these could change in the future) The potential economic and welfare benefits of deepening economic integration in South Asia

The existing barriers to economic integration in the region including where possible (1) political disagreement on both economic and non-economic issues between SAARC states, (2) political economy issues and vested interests; (3) sensitivity around specific markets such as textiles and agriculture, and (4) technical barriers to trade in goods and services.

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Qualitative analysis of a potential Free Trade Agreement between the European Union and India

Analysis of trade patterns and regulatory aspects of potential EU-India FTA and analysis of how far the gains from an EU-India FTA depend on the extent to which such an FTA adequately identifies and deals with issues of deeper integration in areas such as government procurement, services, investment, trade facilitation, trade defence, standards, intellectual property and competition policy. The full report can be found here.

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A framework for evaluating proposals for regional trading arrangements for developing countries

Development of Sussex Framework concept for RTA evaluation and comparison with formal models.

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Previous projects (1998-2005)

  • Analysis of the Effective Economic Impact of Tariff Dismantling (under the Euro-Med Association Agreements) – DFID/EU funded project directed by Dr. M. Gasiorek, with Prof. Sherman Robinson (Sussex), Dr. David Evans (Sussex), Dr. Patricia Augier (CEFI, France)
  • "The impact of the EPAs of the Cotonou Agreement on trade, production and poverty alleviation in the Caribbean region". DFID - EC-PREP project directed by Dr. Michael Gasiorek, with Prof. Alan Winters, and Dr. J.Litchfield
  • Trade and Sustainable development (SUSTRA) EU Commission (Framework Programme 5). Research network – Sophie Thoyer, Jim Rollo
  • Trade Policy and development, Training for DFID - Jim Rollo, Alan Winters, Zhen Kun Wang
  • One Europe or Several? UK Economic and Social Research Council Research 2000 – Jim Rollo
  • Study on the economic impact of extending the pan-European system of cumulation of origin to the Mediterranean partners part of the Barcelona process". Project directed by Dr. Michael Gasiorek, with Dr. P. Holmes, Dr. D. Evans, Dr. P. Augier, and Dr. Charles Lai-Tong for the European Commission, DG-Trade.
  • Global Norms Creation and Competition, EU Commission (DG Trade). Research project – Directed by Jim Rollo with Peter Holmes, David Evans
  • External policy Implications of EU Enlargement, EU Commission (DG Education). Research project – Jim Rollo.
  • Subsidiarity and the WTO (Jim Rollo with Alan Winters), Research Project for World Bank
  • Participation in studies and training sessions on trade and competition for World