Was trade openness with China an initial driver of cross-country human coronavirus infections?
Article publication date: 13 January 2021
Issue publication date: 3 January 2022
This paper aims to consider if an initial driver of the cross-country global coronavirus pandemic was trade openness with China.
The authors estimate simple, seemingly unrelated and zero-inflated count data specifications of a gravity model of trade between China and its trading partners, where the number of human coronavirus infections in a country is a function of the number of distinct good/services exported and imported from China.
Parameter estimates reveal that the number of early cross-country human coronavirus infections increased with respect to trade openness with China, as measured by the number of distinct Chinese exported and imported goods/services, and can account for approximately 24% of early infections among China's trading partners. The findings suggest that one of the costs of trade openness and globalization is that they can be a driver of cross-country human disease pandemics.
This inquiry constitutes a first approach at embedding the possible disease pandemic costs of free trade, trade openness and globalization within a trade gravity model.
Price, G.N. and Adu, D.P. (2022), "Was trade openness with China an initial driver of cross-country human coronavirus infections?", Journal of Economic Studies, Vol. 49 No. 1, pp. 112-125. https://doi.org/10.1108/JES-10-2020-0497
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