Abstract

In this article, I ask what might be the effect of international trade on interstate conflict in Asia and the Pacific. Overall, the associations of trade interdependence and trade volume in the region appear similar to those globally: interdependence is accompanied by a reduction in the chance of militarized conflict onset, whereas the volume of trade appears to reduce the chance of conflict escalation to deadly international violence. I suggest a partial exception for East Asia, implying weaker associations between trade and pacific outcomes. I argue that the regionally common ‘developmental state’ model allows such states to more freely, but less credibly, use trade as a foreign policy tool, reducing trade's constraint upon East Asian states in security affairs. Analyses of East Asian dyads and of developmental states in data from all regions of the globe support my contention that trade interdependence has weaker pacific effects in these contexts, although some other expectations are not supported.

You do not currently have access to this article.