Investigating the impacts of time delays on trade

Lan Liu, Chengyan Yue

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

14 Scopus citations


Time delays due to inefficient customs and administrative procedures have become a leading non-tariff barrier (NTB) that restrict international trade and impair social welfare. This paper investigates how time delays affect product quality, product price, trade flow, and social welfare, using data on the days it takes to clear customs in 96 countries. We explore the impacts of time delays on product quality and price with different levels of perishability. We find that longer time delays at the border would significantly decrease highly perishable agricultural products' quality and price. We also find that for highly perishable agricultural products, improved and simplified customs delays would increase trade flows and social welfare of importing countries.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)108-114
Number of pages7
JournalFood Policy
StatePublished - Apr 1 2013


  • Custom clearance procedures
  • Perishable products
  • Product quality
  • Social welfare
  • Time delays
  • Trade barrier


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