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Trade policy shocks in the UK textile and apparel value chain: firm perceptions of Brexit uncertainty

Casadei, Patrizia and Iammarino, Simona ORCID: 0000-0001-9450-1700 (2021) Trade policy shocks in the UK textile and apparel value chain: firm perceptions of Brexit uncertainty. Journal of International Business Policy, 4 (2). 262 – 285. ISSN 2522-0691

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Identification Number: 10.1057/s42214-020-00097-z


Since the 2008 economic and financial crisis, the rise of populism and nationalism has been associated with increased protectionism and policy uncertainty in the world trade system, with profound side effects for international business (IB) activities and global value chains (GVCs). The aim of this paper is to investigate the way trade policy uncertainty linked to Brexit has affected firms’ behaviors along the GVC of the UK textile and apparel (T&A) industry. We draw upon data from an original survey carried out between June 2019 and January 2020 with 688 firms amongst UK T&A manufacturers, designers, and retailers to grasp their perception of Brexit uncertainty. We show that the uncertainty over trade policy between the UK and the EU – started in the wake of the 2016 referendum – has affected a significant number of firms operating upstream and downstream of the UK T&A value chain, which shows clear signs of ongoing restructuring. Our findings also provide some preliminary evidence of the way the (perceived) effects of trade policy uncertainty may vary depending on firms’ position, production phase, and degree of integration in the GVC. Policy directions for supporting the UK T&A value chain post-Brexit and implications for future IB research are discussed.

Item Type: Article
Official URL:
Additional Information: © 2021 Academy of International Business
Divisions: Geography & Environment
Subjects: H Social Sciences > HD Industries. Land use. Labor
H Social Sciences > HF Commerce
J Political Science > JN Political institutions (Europe) > JN101 Great Britain
Date Deposited: 04 Jan 2021 12:15
Last Modified: 14 Jun 2024 01:30

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