cover image: Intra-national Trade Costs in Low- and Middle-Income Countries (English)


Intra-national Trade Costs in Low- and Middle-Income Countries (English)

3 Jun 2024

Casual observation suggests that intra-national trade costs remain high in low- and middle-income countries. Precisely estimating them is crucial for guiding policies aimed at optimizing economic efficiency within a country's borders. This paper estimates intra-national trade costs for six low- and middle-income countries in Africa and Eastern Europe: Kenya, Madagascar, Nigeria, Rwanda, Tanzania, and Georgia. The analysis exploits unit-level price data collected by countries' national statistical offices for consumer price index calculation purposes. It applies the price differential methodology, which aims at estimating trade costs while accounting for the possibility of imperfect competition among intermediaries, controlling for spatial variation in markups. The findings show that the intra-national trade costs in the sample of countries are between 2.5 and 14 times larger than previous estimates for the United States using the same methodology.
africa georgia madagascar nigeria kenya rwanda tanzania europe road transport transport economics other world trade linkages trade facilitation and logistics spillovers and connectivity transport and economic geography


de Astarloa,Bernardo Díaz, Pkhikidze,Nino

Disclosure Date
Disclosure Status
Doc Name
Intra-national Trade Costs in Low- and Middle-Income Countries
Originating Unit
Off of Sr VP Dev Econ/Chief Econ (DECVP)
Product Line
Advisory Services & Analytics
Published in
United States of America
Rel Proj ID
1W-Shrinking Economic Distance Phase II -- P500577
Series Name
Policy Research working paper ; no. WPS 10789; INFRASTRUCTURE;
TF No/Name
TF0C1998-Global : Shrinking Economic Distance (Relinking)
Unit Owning
ITRGK - Global Knowledge (ITRGK)
Version Type
Volume No

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