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About GTAP: Center for Global Trade Analysis

The Global Trade Analysis Project press kit is a resource for members of the media looking for information on the GTAP. For additional details or requests, please email contactgtap@purdue.edu.

Key Facts

What is GTAP?

  • The Global Trade Analysis Project (GTAP) is a network of researchers and policy makers conducting quantitative analysis of international policy issues, with the goal of improving the quality of quantitative analysis of global economic issues within an economy-wide framework.
  • Founded in 1992 by Thomas W. Hertel, GTAP has become the common "language" for conducting analysis of global policy issues, leading to GTAP-based results being influential in decision making around the world in trade, climate change, energy, and the environment.

Who is GTAP?

  • The Global Trade Analysis Project is coordinated by the Center for Global Trade Analysis, which is housed in the Department of Agricultural Economics at Purdue University in West Lafayette, Indiana, USA. The Center's mission is to provide leadership in economic policy analysis through better data, fostering collaboration and research.
  • GTAP is truly a global project with 17,887 GTAP Network members worldwide representing 175 different countries. The GTAP Network is intended to ease the transfer of skills and knowledge, foster the exchange of ideas among the applied general equilibrium community, and improve collaboration and encourage joined projects.
  • Guidance and base-level support for the project are provided by the GTAP Consortium, which unites members from government agencies, international institutions, the private sector, and academia.

What does GTAP offer?

  • The centerpiece of the Global Trade Analysis Project is the GTAP Data Base, a global data base describing bilateral trade patterns, production, consumption, and intermediate use of commodities and services. The GTAP Data Base is utilized by thousands worldwide and is a key input into contemporary applied general equilibrium analysis of global economic issues.
  • The underlying framework for the theory and structure for analysis come from two global general equilibrium models, the Standard and Dynamic GTAP Models, which are developed and maintained by the Center for Global Trade Analysis.
  • The Center for Global Trade Analysis also offers a number of conferences and courses to help promote GTAP-based research, education, collaboration, and outreach, many of which have led to the 25,000+ citations to various GTAP-based research on Google Scholar. In addition, the Center also publishes the Journal of Global Economic Analysis, which provides an open access, peer-reviewed platform for publication and dissemination of innovations concerning applied general equilibrium modeling.

Recent "GTAP in the News" Stories

Studies, stories, and more by GTAP Network members using GTAP data.

Four Times More Tariff Pain Than Financial Gain in 'New NAFTA'
November 2018 - For the administration, the proposed United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA) is a vindication of President Trump's raw-muscled confrontation of trading partners. But although Trump declared that the USMCA "is a very, very big deal for our farmers," a study released on Wednesday says U.S. farm exports will fall by $1.8 billion due to retaliatory tariffs by Mexico and Canada. That would be four times larger than the $450 million in gains that would be generated by "modest market access improvements" in the successor to NAFTA.
Tariffs could negate gains from new NAFTA, Farm Foundation says in report
November 2018 - The deals struck by the U.S., Mexico and Canada in renegotiating the North American Free Trade Agreement promise new trading opportunities for U.S. farmers, but the Trump administration's trade wars and the tariffs that go with them more than negate the potential gains, according to a new study presented today by the Farm Foundation.
Tariffs Overwhelm USMCA Gains
November 2018 - The new North American free trade agreement, once ratified, will provide a bump in U.S. agricultural exports. But an analysis released Wednesday by the Farm Foundation shows those trade gains are overwhelmed by lost exports due to retaliatory tariffs.
Retaliatory tariffs to inflict heavy losses on U.S. agricultural exports: study
November 2018 - U.S. agricultural exports are expected to decline by 1.8 billion U.S. dollars due to retaliatory tariffs from Canada and Mexico in response to the U.S. decision to impose tariffs on steel and aluminum imports, and could suffer greater losses with broader retaliation from other trading partners, a new study has found.
Study: Net loss to US ag from USMCA
November 2018 - Though the new United State-Mexico-Canada Agreement, or USMCA, will increase U.S. dairy and poultry exports to Canada, the gain may be more than offset by retaliatory tariffs, a new study shows.
[Full List]

Proper Referencing

Below are examples of how to reference the GTAP Data Bases and/or Models. Highlighted text represents variable details.

General Usage
  • The quantitative findings discussed in this report are based on the xxx model, calibrated to the GTAP # Data Base (www.gtap.agecon.purdue.edu). Additional information on the specific aggregation and model modifications are available from the authors and/or posted at xxx.
GTAP Data Base GTAP Model
  • Corong, E., Hertel, T., McDougall, R., Tsigas, M., & van der Mensbrugghe, D. (2017). The Standard GTAP Model, Version 7. Journal of Global Economic Analysis, 2(1), 1-119. doi:http://dx.doi.org/10.21642/JGEA.020101AF

Key Graphics

Clicking the links below will display key, live graphics on differenct aspects of GTAP.

GTAP Network Composition

GTAP 10 Data Base – Spatial Coverage

Composite Region (20)
Country (121)
XOC (Rest of Oceania)
XEA (Rest of East Asia)
XSE (Rest of Southeast Asia)
XSA (Rest of South Asia)
XNA (Rest of North America)
XSM (Rest of South America)
XCA (Rest of Central America)
XCB (Caribbean)
XEF (Rest of EFTA)
XEE (Rest of Eastern Europe)
XER (Rest of Europe)
XSU (Rest of Former Soviet Union)
XWS (Rest of Western Asia)
XNF (Rest of North Africa)
XWF (Rest of Western Africa)
XCF (Central Africa)
XAC (South Central Africa)
XEC (Rest of Eastern Africa)
XSC (Rest of South African Customs Union)
XTW (Rest of the World)

GTAP 10 Data Base – Sectoral Coverage

Countries with GTAP Data Base Users

High-Resolution Images

Images © 2018, Purdue University. All rights reserved.

Notable Quotes about GTAP

Thomas Hertel Thomas Hertel
Distinguished Professor and Executive Director
Center for Global Trade Analysis, Department of Agricultural Economics, Purdue University

“GTAP was born out of frustration. Those of us seeking to make forward progress in global CGE modeling were frustrated with the lack of replicability and transparency that reigned in this field (outside of Australia) circa 1990. It was also the case that large, multi-year projects undertaken by forward-looking research managers in public institutions had to start from scratch and ended up reinventing the wheel – particularly when it came to obtaining and reconciling global economic data. This proved very time-consuming and limited the effectiveness of most policy-oriented projects in the global CGE arena. By the end of the one to two years it typically took to come up with a credibly parameterized model, sympathetic managers and decision makers had generally moved on to other interests, and even other positions. By providing a common, widely accepted, analytical data base for global economic analysis, GTAP allows economists to respond quickly to emerging issues, focusing their scarce resources on what really matters. This is typically an accurate characterization of the proposed policies and an improved specification of economic behavior in the sector or region of interest. As a consequence, the GTAP Database is now used on a regular basis by economists and decision makers in many of the world’s leading institutions dealing with international trade and environmental policies. This widespread adoption carries the added benefit that results can be readily communicated across departments, ministries and nations, with virtually no loss of content through translation. Today, 25 years after the project’s founding at Purdue University, GTAP is a language spoken around the world!”

Bob Koopman Bob Koopman
Chief Economist and Director of the Economic Research and Statistics Division
World Trade Organization

“The Global Trade Analysis Project has been instrumental in advancing policy analysis and insights on economy-wide effects for over 20 years. The initial objective of a common database and economic model to assess trade policy changes, which has evolved into energy and environmental questions, filled a major need and truly lowered to "cost of entry" for many researchers and organizations. The collective efforts to develop, refine and update the database and model ensures up to date data and techniques, and helps ensure policy makers benefit from top notch analysis. One important advantage the GTAP approach provides over econometric and partial equilibrium analysis is the ability to illustrate tradeoffs across the economy and to prevent "magical" results so many policy makers would like to see and some other models deliver. The fact is that applied general equilibrium analysis keeps you grounded in the real constraints an economy faces in terms of resource endowments and technologies. Partial views of policy changes often ignore these tradeoffs and seem to suggest to policy makers that economic growth and efficiency are simple things to be released when policy changes. While GTAP and applied general equilibrium has its very real limitations and challenges having this data and toolkit in your analytical portfolio is critical.”

Stephen Karingi Stephen Karingi
Director, Capacity Development Division
United Nations Economic Commission for Africa

“GTAP has helped to not only structure but also liven inter-governmental discussions among African countries on matters of regional integration and trade agreements at bilateral, regional and global level. Regional integration happens to be one of the most critical development pillar for Africa. At the heart of the integration agenda is market integration. Because of GTAP, it has become possible to facilitate high-level discussions among Government Senior Officials and Ministers, because they are able to appreciate results from GTAP applications that show the potential gains of deeper integration and how they are shared. By helping bring science into the inter-governmental discussions and negotiations, GTAP has helped many countries support the idea of accelerating the market integration at sub-regional and continental level. It is through use of GTAP that the idea of an ambitious Continental Free Trade Area has been cemented, after it was possible to demonstrate the possibility of doubling intra-African trade based on results that looked beyond tariffs, to trade facilitation. Beyond regional integration, GTAP has enabled African countries form common positions in their engagement with the developed and emerging economies, in the different bilateral and multilateral negotiations. African countries have therefore been able to have a common voice, given the prioritisation of issues that analysis using GTAP has been able to deliver. Without doubt, policy making in Africa has benefited significantly from GTAP. It is the African researchers' hope that the versatility of the GTAP database will continue to support the efforts of Africa to harness the potential of the main mega-trends in the continent's favour.”

Frank van Tongeren Frank van Tongeren
Head of Division, Policies in Trade and Agriculture
Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development

“GTAP has done nothing less than revolutionize the way we perform applied economic research. Harnessing the power of network economies was not an obvious thing to do in the trade research community, or indeed in economic research more generally, when GTAP started 25 years ago.”

Dominique van der Mensbrugghe Dominique van der Mensbrugghe
Director and Research Professor
Center for Global Trade Analysis, Department of Agricultural Economics, Purdue University

“There is hardly a trade minister in the world who has not heard of GTAP. No trade agreement is made without some quantitative assessment using a GTAP-based model.”

John Reilly John Reilly
Co-Director
Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Joint Program on the Science and Policy of Global Change

“Coming from a perspective of natural resources and the environment, first at the USDA and then at MIT with focus on climate change, I saw the value of an economy-wide approach to evaluating resource and environment issues. However, the challenge with standard input-output, social accounting frameworks is that the wonderful economic assumption that prices represent the marginal value of inputs and outputs, allowing aggregation across ‘apples and oranges’, does not hold for environmental externalities that by definition are not incorporated into market prices. Each dollar of energy or land use does not have the same environmental implication. Thus, what one needed was enough disaggregation to add supplemental physical accounts to the economic data—how many tons of coal (and resultant carbon dioxide emissions), how many hectares of land (lost carbon, albedo change), and what improvements or limits on improvements in efficiency in energy conversion are possible. Substitution elasticities in the power sector, if relative prices were pushed far enough, could end up with more energy coming out than was present in the fuel input, a violation of basic laws of thermodynamics. GTAP has gradually added physical accounting of energy, greenhouse gases, land and water, and more recently greater detail in the power generation sector to the underlying economic data, while demonstrating methods for incorporating that data into analysis. This has been absolutely crucial to understanding the connections between the world economy and the earth system—or more aptly, to allow the creation of models of the earth where human activity is an active part of the system. And, by making this data and research widely available, it has facilitated different avenues of analysis and model development. Advances in computing power have been phenomenal over the past decades—however those advances would be useless without advances in data and analytical approaches to using it. GTAP is the major (only) data resource of for economy-wide modeling.”

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Contact the Center for Global Trade Analysis

Center for Global Trade Analysis
Department of Agricultural Economics, Purdue University
403 West State Street, West Lafayette, IN 47907-2056 USA
Ph: +1-765-494-7048
For additional details or requests, please email contactgtap@purdue.edu.


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Center for Global Trade Analysis
Department of Agricultural Economics
Purdue University
403 West State Street
West Lafayette, Indiana 47907-2056 USA

© 2018, Purdue University. All rights reserved.
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If you have trouble accessing this page due to disability, please contact contactgtap@purdue.edu.