Discussion paper

DP2747 Tariff Peaks in the Quad and Least Developed Country Exports

Although average tariffs in Quad markets are very low, tariff peaks and tariff escalation have a disproportional effect on exports from least developed countries (LDCs). Tariff peak products tend to be heavily concentrated in agriculture and food products and in labour-intensive sectors such as apparel and footwear. Full duty and quota free access for LDCs in the Quad for tariff peak products would result in an 11% increase in their total exports - in the order of $2.5 billion. Exports to Quad countries of tariff peak products would expand by 30-60%. Given that LDC exports of tariff peak items account for only a small share of total developing country exports, granting LDCs duty free access has a negligible impact on other developing countries. For the same reason, Quad imports increase only marginally, suggesting that this should not be a factor constraining implementation of duty free access for the poorest countries.


Olarreaga, M and F Ng (eds) (2001), “DP2747 Tariff Peaks in the Quad and Least Developed Country Exports”, CEPR Press Discussion Paper No. 2747. https://cepr.org/publications/dp2747