Trade Standards Compliance in Asia

IDE Research Bulletin


March 2017

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Aim of the project

In this research project, development of global food supply chains is examined in the era when public food safety regulations as well as private standards are becoming stricter around the world. To a certain degree, globalization is a result of the fact that many countries (especially developing countries) are now possessing adequate industrial capabilities in many goods. Couple with the general reduction in tariff rates, the competitiveness of exporters (or domestic firms linked with global supply chain) is increasingly defined not only by the efficiency of industrial activities but also on the quality, especially on the regulatory and standard compliance capabilities. This research project aims that uncovering the factors associated with increase in quality management along the supply chains in developing countries. This research is a part of continuing effort to deepen our understanding on the impact of regulations/standards on international trade.1
The research project focused on two major industries of East Asia: tea and shrimp in three different research papers. The first paper paints the general trend in the tea industry, especially on the exporting activities. In addition, the paper offers the overview of key literature concerning the regulatory and standard compliances and exports from developing countries. The second paper focuses on China and Sri Lanka, who are two major exporters of tea. The paper utilizes the data on port rejections,combined with the case studies of tea supply chains in China and Sri Lanka. The findings from this research indicate that quality management along the supply chain is critical to ensure regulatory and standard compliance. The third paper then assess what factors are associated with the adoption of better management practices (which also include better quality control management) using the data from shrimp industry in Vietnam. The result shows that external information and training are key to improving the adoption rate of better management practices of farmers in Vietnam.