nep-afr New Economics Papers
on Africa
Issue of 2007‒10‒20
four papers chosen by
Suzanne McCoskey
George Washington University

  1. Export intensity and the competitive intelligence of exporting companies: evidence from Belgium and South Africa By Cuyvers L.; Dumont M.; Viviers W.; De Pelsmacker P.; Muller M.-L.; Jegers M.; Saayman A.
  2. Evaluating the Location Efficiency of Arabian and African Seaports Using Data Envelopment Analysis (DEA) By Ahmed Salem Al-Eraqi; Carlos Pestana Barros; Adli Mustaffa; Ahamad Tajudin Khader
  3. Addressing the Employment-Poverty Nexus in Kenya: Comparing Cash-Transfer and Job-Creation Programmes By Eduardo Zepeda
  4. Growth, Democracy, and Civil War By Antonio Ciccone; Markus Brückner

  1. By: Cuyvers L.; Dumont M.; Viviers W.; De Pelsmacker P.; Muller M.-L.; Jegers M.; Saayman A.
    Abstract: The present paper investigates into the relationship between Competitive Intelligence (CI) factors, characteristics, information sources, needs, requirements and the export intensity of exporting companies in two distinct samples (Flanders and South Africa). We establish whether there are significant differences between firms, grouped according to export intensity with respect to awareness, use, information sources and attitude towards CI activities. A questionnaire was developed and sent to exporting firms, resulting in a usable sample of 309 South African and 295 Flemish respondents. These firms are grouped according to export intensity, and CI practices between groups are compared. In contrast with some distinct cross-country differences, in both Flanders and South Africa, export intensive firms appear to be more aware and supportive of CI activities than less export intensive firms.
    Date: 2006–10
  2. By: Ahmed Salem Al-Eraqi; Carlos Pestana Barros; Adli Mustaffa; Ahamad Tajudin Khader
    Abstract: In this paper the efficiency and performance is evaluated for 22 seaports in the region of East Africa and the Middle East. The aim of our study is to compare seaports situated on the maritime trade road between the East and the West. These are considered as middledistance ports at which goods from Europe and Far East/Australia can be exchanged and transhipped to all countries in the Middle East and East Africa. All these seaports are regional coasters, and dhow trade was built on these locations, leading this part of the world to become an important trade centre. Data was collected for 6 years (2000-2005) and a non-parametric linear programming method, DEA (Data Envelopment Analysis) is applied. The ultimate goal of our study is: 1) to estimate the performance levels of the ports under consideration. This will help in proposing solutions for better performance and developing future plans. 2) to select optimum transhipment locations.
    Keywords: Middle East and East African Seaports; Data Envelopment Analysis; Seaports Efficiency; Performance measurement of Containers Ports; transshipment.
    Date: 2007
  3. By: Eduardo Zepeda (International Poverty Centre)
    Abstract: This Working Paper seeks to provide an overview of the link between employment and poverty in Kenya. Using descriptive statistics and regression techniques, it examines unemployment, underemployment, employment and labour earnings, and the link of all these with poverty. Data are from the unit records of the Labour Force Survey of 1999/99, the latest available data at the time that this paper was written. The paper finds that Kenya faces daunting employment challenges. Unemployment is high and heavily affects urban areas, particularly young workers (15-24 years old) and mature educated workers (55-64 years old). Many of the unemployed are women. In rural areas, the main problem is underemployment, which also disproportionately affects women. Employment is dominated by traditional farming and pastoralists activities in rural areas and by informal activities in urban areas. Productive jobs are limited basically to wage employment, mostly in the modern public and private sectors concentrated in urban areas. Labour earnings are highly differentiated, starting from the high wages of employees in the modern public and private sectors, followed by the earnings of informal-sector workers, and ending with the low incomes of rural traditional farmers. Returns to education are high, very high in the case of tertiary education?suggesting that skills are scarce and highly demanded. The single two most important factors decreasing the probability of being poor are having higher education and having access to a paid job in the modern sectors. The employment landscape corresponds to that of a stagnant economy in which poor workers are in need of short-term social protection and all workers are in need of an effective long-term employment-focused development strategy. Using micro data, the paper simulates two programmes designed to provide income support to poor households: a child-transfer and a job-creation programme. Results suggest that both programmes improve the incomes of the poor and result in significant reductions in the depth of poverty. Simulations indicate that while the child-transfer programme performs better in rural areas, where dependency ratios are higher, the job-creation programme markedly reduces poverty in urban areas, particularly among the extremely poor, and even, surprisingly, among poor female workers.
    Keywords: Employment, Poverty, Child grants, Public works
    JEL: C52 J21 J24 O55
    Date: 2007–10
  4. By: Antonio Ciccone; Markus Brückner
    Abstract: Does economic growth affect the likelihood of civil war? Answering this question requires dealing with reverse causation. Our approach exploits that international commodity prices have a significant effect on the income growth of Sub-Saharan African countries. We show that lower income growth makes civil war more likely in non-democracies. This effect is significantly weaker in democracies; as a result, we find no link between growth and civil war in these countries. Our reducedform results also indicate that lower international commodity price growth has no effect on civil war in democracies, but raises the likelihood of civil war incidence and onset in nondemocracies.
    Keywords: Commodity prices, rainfall, income growth, civil war
    JEL: O0 P0 Q0
    Date: 2007–10

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