Discussion Papers

No.215 Analysis on International Trade of CLM Countries

by Nu Nu Lwin

August 2009


Since their accession to AFTA, trade volumes of CLM countries have being grown rapidly while their trade patterns and directions have significantly changed. Recognizing the importance of international trade in CLM economies, this study attempts to analyze the trade patterns of CLM countries based the gravity model. The empirical analysis is conducted to identify the determining factors of each country’s bilateral trade flows and policy implications for promoting their trade.

The results indicate that CLM’s trade patterns are mainly affected by partner country’s GDP, the difference between per capita GDPs of two countries, distance, common border, and presence in particular FTA. Their trade relations with East Asian countries mainly China, Japan and Korea have yet to be exploited to their full potential. These findings suggest that CLM countries needs to promote their bilateral trade with countries in close proximity and having large economic size and high consumers’ purchasing power through accelerating their trade liberalization efforts in FTAs in progress.

Keywords: CLM countries, ASEAN, East Asia, FTA, Bilateral trade

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