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The rise and fall of (Chinese) African apparel exports

Vézina, Pierre-Louis; Vezina, Pierre-Louis; Rotunno, Lorenzo; Vézina, Pierre-Louis; Vézina, Pierre Louis; Wang, Zheng


Pierre-Louis Vézina

Pierre-Louis Vezina

Lorenzo Rotunno

Pierre-Louis Vézina

Pierre Louis Vézina

Zheng Wang


During the final years of the Multifiber Agreement (2001-2005) the US imposed quotas on Chinese apparel while it gave African apparel duty- and quota-free access. We argue that the combination of these policies led to a rapid but ephemeral rise of African exports that can be explained in part by ethnic-Chinese firms using Africa as a quota-hopping export platform. We first provide a large body of anecdotal evidence on the ethnic-Chinese apparel wave in Africa. Second, we show that Chinese exports to Africa predict US imports from the same countries and in the same apparel categories but only where transhipment incentives are present, i.e. for products facing US quotas and in countries with preferential access to the US unconstrained by rules of origin. Our estimates indicate that direct transhipment may account for around 22% of Africa's apparel exports during 2001-2008.


Rotunno, L., Vézina, P. L., & Wang, Z. (2013). The rise and fall of (Chinese) African apparel exports. Journal of Development Economics, 105, 152-163.

Journal Article Type Article
Acceptance Date Aug 7, 2013
Online Publication Date Aug 15, 2013
Publication Date Nov 1, 2013
Deposit Date Nov 13, 2014
Publicly Available Date Nov 23, 2017
Journal Journal of development economics
Print ISSN 0304-3878
Publisher Elsevier
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 105
Pages 152-163
Keywords Economics and Econometrics; Development
Public URL
Publisher URL
Copyright Statement © 2013, Elsevier. Licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International
Additional Information Authors' accepted manuscript of article published: Journal of development economics, 2013, v.105


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