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Natural Hazards and Earth System Sciences An interactive open-access journal of the European Geosciences Union
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Volume 15, issue 10 | Copyright
Nat. Hazards Earth Syst. Sci., 15, 2273-2281, 2015
https://doi.org/10.5194/nhess-15-2273-2015
© Author(s) 2015. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License.

Research article 09 Oct 2015

Research article | 09 Oct 2015

The asymmetric impact of natural disasters on China's bilateral trade

Y. Meng1,2, S. Yang1,2, P. Shi1,2, and C. C. Jeager1,3 Y. Meng et al.
  • 1State Key Laboratory of Earth Surface Processes and Resource Ecology, Beijing Normal University, Beijing 100875, China
  • 2Academy of Disaster Reduction and Emergency Management, Ministry of Civil Affairs & Ministry of Education, Beijing 100875, China
  • 3Global Climate Forum, Berlin 10178, Germany

Abstract. Globalization and technological revolutions are making the world more interconnected. International trade is an important approach linking the world. Since the 2011 Tohoku earthquake and tsunami in Japan shocked the global supply chain, more attention has been paid to the global impact of large-scale disasters. China is the second largest trader in the world and faces frequent natural disasters. Therefore, this study proposes a gravity model for China's bilateral trade tailored to national circumstances and estimates the impact of natural disasters in China and trading partner countries on Chinese imports and exports. We analyzed Chinese and trading partner statistical data from 1980 to 2012. Study results show the following: (1) China's natural disasters have a positive impact on exports but have no significant impact on imports; (2) trading partner countries' natural disasters reduce Chinese imports and exports; (3) both development level and land area of the partners are important in determining the intensity of natural disaster impacts on China's bilateral trade. The above findings suggest that the impact of natural disasters on trade is asymmetric and significantly affected by other factors, which demand further study.

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Short summary
We propose a gravity model tailed to China’s national circumstances and taking into account the natural disaster impact. China’s natural disasters increase exports, but they have no significant impact on imports. Trading partner countries’ natural disasters reduce Chinese imports and exports. The impact of natural disasters on trade is asymmetric and significantly affected by other factors, like development level and land area.
We propose a gravity model tailed to China’s national circumstances and taking into account...
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