nep-afr New Economics Papers
on Africa
Issue of 2013‒07‒05
24 papers chosen by
Quentin Wodon
World Bank

  1. The impact of economic shocks in the rest of the world on South Africa: Evidence from a global VAR By Annari de Waal; Renee van Eyden
  2. Stress-testing Africa's recent growth and poverty performance By Devarajan, Shantayanan; Go, Delfin S.; Maliszewska, Maryla; Osorio-Rodarte, Israel; Timmer, Hans
  3. On the Institutional Details that Mediate the Impact of Cash Crops on Food Crop Intensification: The Case of Cotton By Tschirley, David; Theriault, Veronique
  4. Impact of Changing Seasonal Rainfall Patterns on Rainy-Season Crop Production in the Guinea Savannah of West Africa By Müller, Marc; Sanfo, Safietou; Laube, Wolfram
  5. Connection charges and electricity access in Sub-Saharan Africa By Golumbeanu, Raluca; Barnes, Douglas
  6. Mobile Phone Coverage and Producer Markets: Evidence from West Africa By Jenny C. Aker; Marcel Fafchamps
  7. Climate Shocks and East African Maize Prices By Chonabayashi, Shun
  8. Gender inequality in multidimensional welfare deprivation in west Africa : the case of Burkina Faso and Togo By Agbodji, Akoete Ega; Batana, Yele Maweki; Ouedraogo, Denis
  9. SAVINGS and economic growth: a historical analysis of the relationship between savings and economic growth in the CAPE Colony economy, 1850-1909. By Verhoef, Grietjie; Greyling, Lorraine; Mwamba, John
  11. Maize Safety in Kenya: The Role of Traders By Ordoñez, Romina; Hoffmann, Vivian
  12. Should Zambia produce biodiesel from soybeans ? some insights from an empirical analysis By de Gorter, Harry; Drabik, Dusan; Timilsina, Govinda R.
  13. Response of rice yields in Ghana: some prescriptions for future rice policy By Boansi, David
  14. Asymmetric Information and Food Safety: Maize in Kenya By Hoffmann, Vivian; Mutiga, Samuel; Harvey, Jagger; Nelson, Rebecca; Milgroom, Michael
  15. Are biofuels economically competitive with their petroleum counterparts ?production cost analysis for Zambia By Sinkala, Thomson; Timilsina, Govinda R.; Ekanayake, Indira J.
  16. Macroeconomic and distributional impacts of jatropha-based biodiesel in Mali By Boccanfuso, Dorothee; Coulibaly, Massa; Timilsina, Govinda R.; Savard, Luc
  17. The Effect of Agricultural Diversification on the Anthropometric Outcomes of Children: Evidence from Tanzania By Chen, Susan E.; Salas, Paula Cordero
  18. Public Works in Ethiopia. Crowding out on-farm labor? By Rodrigo, María F
  19. Evolution of Monetary Policy Transmission Mechanism in Malawi: A TVP-VAR Approach By Chance Mwabutwa; Manoel Bittencourt; Nicola Viegi
  20. Does Early Cash-Based Interventions in a Food Crisis Enhance Resilience? Evidence from Niger By Tumusiime, Emmanuel
  21. Price and non-price determinants and supply response of rice in Côte d’Ivoire By Boansi, David
  22. Understanding child labor in Ghana beyond poverty -- the structure of the economy, social norms, and no returns to rural basic education By Krauss, Alexander
  23. The Impact of Microinsurance on Consumption Smoothing and Asset Protection: Evidence from a Drought in Kenya By Janzen, Sarah A.; Carter, Michael R.
  24. The effect of product standards on agricultural exports from developing countries By Ferro, Esteban; Wilson, John S.; Otsuki, Tsunehiro

  1. By: Annari de Waal (Department of Economics, University of Pretoria); Renee van Eyden (Department of Economics, University of Pretoria)
    Abstract: The significant change in South Africa’s trade patterns over the past two decades should affect the impact of shocks in the rest of the world on the country, since South Africa is a small open economy. We investigate the effect with the use of a global vector autoregression (GVAR) model from 1979Q2 to 2009Q4. To account for changes in international trade linkages, we assemble the country-specific foreign variables with time-varying trade-weighted data. We show that the long-term impact of a shock to Chinese GDP on South African GDP is 330% stronger in 2009 than in 1995, due to the substantial increase in South Africa’s trade with China since the mid-1990s. By 2005, a United States (US) GDP shock only has a quarter of the long-term impact on South African GDP compared to 1995, as trade with the US declined noticeably. By 2009, the impact of a US GDP shock on South African GDP is insignificant. The results indicate why the recent global crisis did not affect South Africa as much as it affected developed economies. It also stresses the increased risk, to the South African economy and economies in the rest of the world, should China experience slower GDP growth.
    Keywords: South Africa, developing economies, trade linkages, global macroeconomic modelling, global vector autoregression (GVAR)
    JEL: C32 E32 F43 O55
    Date: 2013–06
  2. By: Devarajan, Shantayanan; Go, Delfin S.; Maliszewska, Maryla; Osorio-Rodarte, Israel; Timmer, Hans
    Abstract: After an impressive acceleration in growth and poverty reduction since the mid-1990s, many African countries continue to register robust growth in the aftermath of the global financial crisis. Will this growth persist, given the tepid recovery in developed countries, numerous weather shocks, and civil conflicts in Africa? This paper"stress tests"African economies. The findings indicate that Africa's long-term growth is fairly impervious to a prolonged recession in high-income countries. Growth is, however, much more sensitive to a disruption of capital flows to the region, and to internal shocks, such as civil conflict and drought, even if the latter follow historical patterns. The broad policy implication is that with proper domestic production conditions African countries can sustain robust long-term growth. Because of the economic dominance of the agriculture sector and the share of food in household budgets, countries will need to increase the resilience of agriculture and protect it from unfavorable climate change impacts, such as drought. As in the past, civil conflicts and violence will pose by far the greatest threat to Africa's performance.
    Keywords: Economic Theory&Research,Emerging Markets,Rural Poverty Reduction,Achieving Shared Growth,Climate Change Economics
    Date: 2013–06–01
  3. By: Tschirley, David; Theriault, Veronique
    Abstract: The surge in basic food commodity prices in 2007/08 and again in 2011, have led to a renewed focus among governments and donors on agricultural growth, especially in staple food production in Sub-Saharan Africa. It is widely agreed that smallholder-led agricultural growth would contribute most to improved food security and reduced poverty. Yet, how to achieve broader and more sustainable access by smallholder farmers to productivity enhancing inputs for food crop production remains a largely unsolved riddle. In light of the great institutional diversity across cotton sectors in Sub-Saharan Africa, this study investigates whether cotton market structures can be used to spur the intensification of smallholder food production. Especially, it examines how the particular institutional structure of a cotton sector might affect its ability to spur such growth in food crop intensification and productivity. With this aim, a conceptual framework linking cotton institutional structures to food crop intensification is first developed. Drawing on the literature, country experience is then reviewed and predictions from the conceptual framework are compared with empirical evidence.
    Keywords: Intensification, Institutional details, cotton, food crops, conceptual framework, Crop Production/Industries, Food Security and Poverty,
    Date: 2013
  4. By: Müller, Marc; Sanfo, Safietou; Laube, Wolfram
    Abstract: Rainy-season farming is a major source of income for the rural population in the Guinea Savannah zone of West Africa. Farming systems in the region are dominated by rain-fed production of cereals, but include also leguminous crops and oilseeds. A recent World Bank study has identified high potentials for competitive agricultural production and agriculture-led growth in the Guinea Savannah zones of Sub-Saharan Africa. This optimistic outlook is conditional on appropriate investment strategies, policy reforms, and institutional changes. Furthermore, the World Bank warns that global climate change could pose a potential constraint for agricultural growth due to likely reductions in rainfall levels and significant increases in rainfall variability. This could lead to serious dry spells and a drop of crop yields. The study regions are the département Atakora in Benin, the région Sud-Ouest in Burkina Faso, and the Upper East Region in Ghana. Climate projections and trend estimates for these regions show very heterogeneous results for level and variability of monthly rainfall patterns. Therefore, we want to investigate which potential future developments pose the greater threat for agricultural production in the study regions. We develop a set of regional agricultural supply models, each representing 10-12 cropping activities and roughly 150.000 ha of agricultural area. We distinguish two stages of crop production: The planting stage from April to June and the yield formation stage between June and November. Preliminary results suggest that drought events during the planting stage have a more severe impact on the output of individual crops than drought events during the second stage. In contrast, the impact on total farm revenues appears to be more prominent during the second stage, when farmers have a limited capability to adjust their production plan. A clear if not surprising result is the larger vulnerability of crops with growth cycles ranging from the very beginning to the very end of the rainy season. The observed diversity of cropping activities serves the purpose to reduce the vulnerability to adverse rainfall events within a certain range. However, some extreme events are associated with very poor harvests of specific cash crops, thus severely affecting the income of the farming sector. A comprehensive picture will be obtained once the climate change scenarios are completed and the model results are tested and validated for various settings.
    Keywords: Climate change, West Africa, agricultural production, stochastic production frontier, highest posterior density estimation, Crop Production/Industries, Environmental Economics and Policy, International Development, International Relations/Trade,
    Date: 2013
  5. By: Golumbeanu, Raluca; Barnes, Douglas
    Abstract: Sub-Saharan Africa trails other regions in providing access to electricity for poor urban and rural residents. This poor performance can be linked to various factors, including political interference in utility policy, higher investment costs and lower profitability of extending service to rural areas. But a major obstacle to wider access is the high charges consumers must pay to connect to the electricity network. The connection charges in Sub-Saharan Africa are among the highest in the world, which has resulted in low rates of electrification in many countries. This paper reviews ways to improve electrification rates by addressing the issue of high connection charges. Essential to the success of such efforts is concurrent political commitment to identify, examine, and implement various low-cost electrification approaches and financing solutions as part of a broad plan to improve access. Electricity companies can lower their connection-related costs, and thus consumer charges, by using a variety of low-cost technologies and materials in distribution networks and household connections; making bulk purchases of materials; and adjusting technical standards to reflect the lower loads of households that use a minimum amount of electricity. Strategies for lowering connection charges may also include spreading charges over a reasonable period, rolling them into monthly service payments, subsidizing connections, or amortizing them through loans. Lowering connection charges is not the only step, but it is an essential part of any strategy for addressing the electricity access gap between rich and poor households in Sub-Saharan Africa, a gap that denies millions of poor Africans the benefits of electricity.
    Keywords: Energy Production and Transportation,Access to Finance,E-Business,Engineering,Electric Power
    Date: 2013–06–01
  6. By: Jenny C. Aker; Marcel Fafchamps
    Abstract: Expansion in mobile phone coverage has improved access to information throughout the developing world, particularly within sub-Saharan Africa. The existing evidence suggests that information technology has improved market efficiency and reduced consumer prices for certain commodities. There are fewer studies assessing the impact of the technology on producers. Using market-level data we estimate the impact of mobile phone coverage on producer prices in Niger. We find that mobile phone coverage reduced the spatial dispersion of producer prices by 6 percent for a semi-perishable commodity, cowpea. These effects are strongest for remote markets and lowest at harvest time. Mobile telephony, however, has no effect on price dispersion for millet and sorghum, two storable crops. There is also no impact on the average producer price, but mobile phone coverage is associated with a reduction in the intra-annual price risk, primarily for cowpeas. These findings are confirmed by data from a farmer-level survey: we find that farmers owning mobile phones obtain more price information but do not engage more in spatial arbitrage and hence do not receive higher prices – except for peanuts. The additional evidence presented here helps understand how mobile phone coverage affects agricultural market efficiency in developing countries. It suggests that the impact differs across agents – depending on whether they use the information for arbitrage or not – and across crops – depending on whether inter-temporal arbitrage is possible or not.
    Keywords: Africa, Information, Information Technology, Market Performance, Search Costs, Niger
    JEL: O1 O3 Q13
    Date: 2013
  7. By: Chonabayashi, Shun
    Keywords: Crop Production/Industries, Environmental Economics and Policy,
    Date: 2013
  8. By: Agbodji, Akoete Ega; Batana, Yele Maweki; Ouedraogo, Denis
    Abstract: The importance of gender equality is reflected not only in the Millennium Development Goals, but also in the World Bank's Gender Action Plan launched in 2007 as well as in other treaties and actions undertaken at regional and international levels. Unlike other work on gender and poverty, which is mostly based on monetary measurement, the present study makes use of a counting approach to examine gender issues in Burkina Faso and Togo using household surveys. Focusing on six dimensions (housing, basic utilities, assets, education, employment, and access to credit) largely recognized as Millennium Development Goal targets, the main findings of the study indicate that overall individuals are the most deprived in education in Burkina Faso, while the reverse situation is true in Togo. Gender inequality is observed in all dimensions since women always seem to be more deprived than men. The situation is also marked by regional disparities. Moreover, the assessment of dimensional contributions shows different patterns for each country. While employment proves to be the main contributor of gender inequality in Burkina Faso, three dimensions (assets, access to credit, and employment) account together for most of the total contribution to gender inequality in Togo. There is also a positive correlation between multidimensional deprivation and women's age in Burkina Faso, whereas both measures seem to be uncorrelated in Togo.
    Keywords: Gender and Development,Rural Poverty Reduction,Gender and Law,Regional Economic Development,Population Policies
    Date: 2013–06–01
  9. By: Verhoef, Grietjie; Greyling, Lorraine; Mwamba, John
    Abstract: Abstract The sub-optimal savings propensity in South Africa the past three decades causes concern for the ability of the country to support its economic development. An historical analysis of the development of the savings’ trends in South Africa may assist in understanding the historical roots of the phenomenon. Apart from general descriptions of the nature of economic activity in the Cape Colony very little is known about the role financial sector development and savings played in the growing colonial economy. This paper explores the performance of the economy of the Cape Colony between 1850 and 1909, through the business cycles, financial sector stability, the nature and extent of economic activity and seeks to explain the relationship between savings and economic growth. The question is whether the general view that ‘financial development is robustly growth promoting’ can be substantiated in the last half of the nineteenth century Cape Colony? It contributes to the economic history literature on the colonial past of South Africa by using newly compiled data on the GDP of the Cape Colony during the last half of the nineteenth century. The paper finds that despite the expectations in the literature that financial deepening contributes to economic growth; the Cape Colony did not display such causal relationship between savings and economic growth in the period under review. The paper shows the different forms of savings in the colony and the trend of savings behavior in the period amidst the development of a relatively robust financial sector.
    Keywords: Keywords: Cape colony, economic growth, financial deepening, gross domestic product, savings.
    JEL: N27
    Date: 2013–06–22
  10. By: Ayinde, O. E.; Muchie, M.; Abduolaye, T.; Olaoye, G.; Akangbe, J.; Folorunsho, O.J.
    Keywords: Crop Production/Industries, Food Security and Poverty, International Development, International Relations/Trade,
    Date: 2013
  11. By: Ordoñez, Romina; Hoffmann, Vivian
    Keywords: Crop Production/Industries, International Development, International Relations/Trade,
    Date: 2013
  12. By: de Gorter, Harry; Drabik, Dusan; Timilsina, Govinda R.
    Abstract: Facing a huge fiscal burden due to imports of entire petroleum despite the availability of a surplus of agricultural land to produce biofuels, Zambia, a country in Sub-Saharan Africa, has recently introduced a biofuel mandate. But, a number of questions, particularly those related to the economics of biofuels, have not been fully investigated yet. Using an empirical model this study analyzes the economics of meeting the biodiesel mandate through soybean feedstock. The study finds that meeting the biodiesel mandate with biodiesel from soybeans would reduce social welfare because the country's soybean imports would cost more than the expected reduction in petroleum imports. However, if Zambia increases its domestic soybean supply along with its capacity to convert soybean to biodiesel, as well as oil yield, soybean based biodiesel is likely to be welfare-beneficial, even if biodiesel prices are above diesel prices. The study also finds that under current market prices and transportation costs and constraints, the same amount of biodiesel can be produced most cost-effectively with a tax exemption. A blend mandate would be less cost effective, while a biodiesel production subsidy represents the least efficient policy option.
    Keywords: Energy Production and Transportation,Markets and Market Access,Renewable Energy,Emerging Markets,Economic Theory&Research
    Date: 2013–06–01
  13. By: Boansi, David
    Abstract: With local rice production lagging well behind demand as a result of low productivity of farmers’ fields, this study analyzed the response of rice yields in Ghana to major internal and external factors which have direct and indirect effects on production and to producers. Yield of rice was found to increase with producer price of rice, irrigated area, labor availability and world price of rice to producer price of rice ratio. It however decreases with increases in harvested area and price of urea fertilizer due to fertility issues, producer price of maize due to influences from resource allocation, and with nominal rate of assistance due to secondary distortions on input prices. To increase and sustain rice yields, future rice policy measures should couple area expansion with vital intensification measures to help mitigate the adverse impact from sole expansion of area and should as well ensure appropriate transmission of prices with least distortion. Investment should be made towards the initiation and diffusion of low cost water control and irrigation systems across the country and vital measures be devised to reduce labor shortages. In improving the fertility of farmers’ fields, the current fertilizer subsidy structure should be improved upon and measures put in place to improve farmers access to credit as this is a vital issue that needs addressing to ensure appropriate response of farmers to future price and non-price incentives
    Keywords: Yield response, rice planning, productivity, Ghana
    JEL: Q11 Q18
    Date: 2013–06–21
  14. By: Hoffmann, Vivian; Mutiga, Samuel; Harvey, Jagger; Nelson, Rebecca; Milgroom, Michael
    Abstract: When quality is not observable by prospective buyers, theory predicts that the quality of marketed goods will suffer, and the volume of trade will be depressed. Using data from more than 2,000 maize samples collected in four Kenyan provinces, we show that the presence of aflatoxin, an invisible and dangerous fungal contaminant, is not reflected in maize prices but does affect how maize is used. This apparent market failure reduces the quality of maize available on the market. In addition, we show that self-produced maize is a normal good.
    Keywords: Crop Production/Industries, Food Consumption/Nutrition/Food Safety, O12, O13, O15,
    Date: 2013
  15. By: Sinkala, Thomson; Timilsina, Govinda R.; Ekanayake, Indira J.
    Abstract: With increased global interest in biofuels, Zambia, a Sub-Saharan African country that entirely depends on imports for its petroleum supply, is planning to implement blending mandates for biofuels. But, a large number of issues -- including production costs of biofuels, land requirements to meet the mandates, and environmental benefits -- have not yet been explored. This study aims to contribute in filling this gap. It finds that depending on feedstock type, costs of ethanol production range from US$0.360 a liter to US$0.680 a liter while the costs for biodiesel production range from US$0.612 a liter to US$0.952 a liter. Even if lower energy contents of biofuels are taken into account, the analysis shows that biofuels are cheaper than their petroleum counterparts. Considering the cost advantage of these biofuels over petroleum products and the availability of surplus agricultural land, Zambia is likely to benefit from the development of a biofuel industry. Biofuels is expected to reduce Zambia's petroleum import bill, which currently stands at more than US$700 million, enhance food security by providing incentives to increase yields, and increase affordability and accessibility to modern energy in the country where 77 percent of the population still lacks access to modern energy. It could also stimulate rural employment and development.
    Keywords: Energy Production and Transportation,Renewable Energy,Economic Theory&Research,Climate Change Mitigation and Green House Gases,Food&Beverage Industry
    Date: 2013–06–01
  16. By: Boccanfuso, Dorothee; Coulibaly, Massa; Timilsina, Govinda R.; Savard, Luc
    Abstract: Mali, a landlocked West African nation at the southern edge of the Sahara Desert, has introduced a program to produce biodiesel using jatropha curcas, a non-edible shrub widely available throughout the country by farmers for generations as a living fence for their gardens. The aim of the program is to partially substitute diesel, which is entirely supplied through imports, with domestic biodiesel produced from a feedstock that does not have any commercial value otherwise and thus has zero opportunity cost. This paper uses a computable general equilibrium model to investigate economy-wide and distributional impacts of large-scale jatropha production on different types of lands, and conversion of jatropha oil to biodiesel for domestic consumption. It assesses impacts on agricultural and other commodity markets, resource and factor markets, and international trade. The results are fed into a detailed household survey-based micro-simulation model to assess impacts on poverty and income distribution. The study finds that the expansion of jatropha farming would be beneficial in terms of both macroeconomic and distributional impacts as long as idle lands, which have been neither used for agriculture nor protected as forests, are utilized. However, if jatropha plantation is carried out on existing agriculture lands, the economy-wide impacts would be negative although it would still help reduce rural poverty.
    Keywords: Economic Theory&Research,Rural Poverty Reduction,Renewable Energy,Markets and Market Access,Labor Policies
    Date: 2013–06–01
  17. By: Chen, Susan E.; Salas, Paula Cordero
    Abstract: This paper provides evidence of the eect of agricultural diversication and commercialization on the health of preschool children. We specically look at the impact of diversication and commercialization on stunting, wasting and underweight by using a nationally representative sample of households taken from the Tanzania National Panel Survey (TNPS). We nd that engaging in contract farming for producing food crops has a negative eect on stunting and wasting. Diversication only has a positive eect on stunting of children at the bottom of the nutritional distribution while commercialization eects vary according to the type of crop that the household sells and the position of children in the nutritional distribution. The results provide insight into the eects of policies that pursue agricultural diversication and commercialization on the household well-being.
    Keywords: nutrition, agricultural diversification, commercialization, household welfare, Community/Rural/Urban Development, Food Consumption/Nutrition/Food Safety, Health Economics and Policy, Public Economics, I12, I15, Q12, Q18,
    Date: 2013–06–03
  18. By: Rodrigo, María F
    Abstract: This paper analyzes the impact of Public Works (PW) from the Productive Safety Net Program (PSNP) in the agricultural regions of Ethiopia. In particular, based on a household model with two inputs, I explore the eects of the program on capital and labor decisions using the Ethiopian Rural Household Surveys (ERHS) from 2004 and 2009. Results indicate that PW did not have an eect crowding out adult labor on- farm but it reduced child labor. Furthremore, after analyzing the relationship between capital and labor inputs, there is not evidence suggesting that the program had an eect on the demand of capital inputs (i.e., units of livestock and value of farming tools).
    Keywords: Farm Management, International Relations/Trade, Labor and Human Capital, Public Economics,
    Date: 2013–06–03
  19. By: Chance Mwabutwa (Department of Economics, University of Pretoria); Manoel Bittencourt (Department of Economics, University of Pretoria); Nicola Viegi (Department of Economics, University of Pretoria)
    Abstract: This paper investigates the evolution of monetary transmission mechanism in Malawi between 1981 and 2010 using a time varying parameter vector autoregressive (TVP-VAR) model with stochastic volatility. We evaluate how the responses of real output and general price level to bank rate, exchange rate and credit shocks changed over time since Malawi adopted financial reforms in 1980s. The paper finds that inflation, real output and exchange rate responses to monetary policy shocks changed over the period under review. Importantly, beginning mid-2000, the monetary policy transmission performed consistently with predictions of economic theory and there is no evidence of price puzzle as found in the previous literature on Malawi. However, the statistical significance of the private credit supply remains weak and this calls for more financial reforms targeting the credit market which can contribute to monetary transmission and promote further economic growth in Malawi.
    Keywords: Monetary Policy Transmission Mechanism, Price Puzzle, Financial Reforms, Bayesian TVP-VAR
    JEL: C49 D12 D91 E21 E44
    Date: 2013–06
  20. By: Tumusiime, Emmanuel
    Abstract: This study examined how households’ responded in the Tillabery region, Niger given early cash transfer intervention and the impact on household food access and ability to cope and recover from a food crisis. Data was also collected from households that did not benefit from the cash transfer program for comparative purposes. Food access indicators are linked to the cash transfer program and structural characteristics of households and the relationships estimated using a propensity weighted econometric model. Results indicate that early cash transfer intervention had a positive impact on staving off short term food deficiency and reducing vulnerability but limited in contributing to longer lasting impact. The results also demonstrate that certain social-structural characteristics of a household, namely, more economically active adults, male head of a household and concerted decision making, are important for improved food access status. Focusing safety net programs based on these household characteristics could benefit efforts to better target those most vulnerable.
    Keywords: Early cash transfer, Food crisis, Niger, Vulnerability, Resilience, Agricultural Finance, Risk and Uncertainty,
    Date: 2013
  21. By: Boansi, David
    Abstract: Characterized by weak local rice productivity, inefficient marketing and processing of paddy among other constraints, the local rice sector in Côte d’Ivoire has failed to meet domestic rice consumption needs. In the absence of comprehension action, the country is expected to face a deficit of 1,731,583 Mt in supply of rice by the year 2020, which could consequently result in huge drainage of foreign exchange through imports. To inform future policy decisions on rice towards mitigation of the adverse effect such occurrence may have on producers, consumers and the country as a whole, this study analyzed the acreage and output responses of rice in Côte d’Ivoire for the period 1966-2009. The results suggest that rice farmers respond more to changes in price of competitive maize crop than they do own-price due to inefficiency of collection, processing and marketing in the local rice industry, limited participation of various stakeholders in development of the rice supply chain, failure of most buyers to observe contract terms and surtax on producer price due to high cost of transportation. The stagnation observed in output between the years 1988 and 2009, is found to result from a significant inverse association between area cultivated and yield of rice. As a major importer of rice and based on results of the current study, it is believed that Côte d’Ivoire could improve on its rice supply and effectively meet the anticipated deficit by putting in place measures to increase land area under cultivation, ensure a harmonization between yield and acreage cultivated, reduce labor shortages, ensure continuous government support to the sector, address the adverse fiscal effect of the exchange rate system and promote stakeholder participation in development of the rice supply chain.
    Keywords: Acreage response, output response, nominal rate of assistance, deficit in supply
    JEL: Q11 Q17 Q18
    Date: 2013–06–10
  22. By: Krauss, Alexander
    Abstract: One in six children age 6-14 are engaged in labor activities in Ghana, with child employment being the leading alternative to schooling. By exploring structural, institutional, geographic, monetary, demographic, and cultural factors affecting household decisions about child labor, the paper's main purpose is to identify the conditions and characteristics of working children, the root causes of their vulnerability, and thus help to inform decision-makers and actors who draft and implement public policy of possible ways to tackle child labor in Ghana. The paper empirically assesses the effects of individual, household, community, regional, and national factors on child labor simultaneously. Findings from the analysis indicate that the underlying causes of child labor vary from factors as widespread in their influence as the structure of the economy (which is largely shaped by family farming), demographics and relevant social norms to those as specific in their manifestation as the geographic isolation of particular groups in the North, a lack of higher returns to schooling up to the basic education level in rural areas, and the low priority and capacity to enforce anti-child labor laws. In addition, an interview conducted with the Minister of Education as well as interviews with Ghanaian children help identify specific interdependencies between child labor and schooling and highlight the societal and economic demand for children to be working. Finally, after identifying which constraints and enabling factors are most important, the paper outlines policy and reform approaches to tackle child labor in Ghana.
    Keywords: Street Children,Youth and Governance,Primary Education,Children and Youth,Education For All
    Date: 2013–06–01
  23. By: Janzen, Sarah A.; Carter, Michael R.
    Abstract: When natural disasters strike in developing countries, households are often forced to choose between preserving assets or consumption: either can result in permanent consequences. In this paper we ask: can insurance transfer risk in a way that reduces the need for households to rely on costly coping strategies that undermine their future productivity? Since 2010, pastoralists in northern Kenya have had access to a novel index-based drought insurance product. We analyze the impact of a drought-induced insurance payout on consumption smoothing and asset protection in this setting. Our results show that insured households are on average 36 percentage points less likely to anticipate drawing down assets, and 25 percentage points less likely to anticipate reducing meals upon receipt of a payout. Empirical evidence of a poverty trap in this setting suggests that these average impacts may mask a heterogeneous behavioral response and subsequent heterogeneous impacts of insurance. For this reason we use Hansen's (2000) threshold estimator to estimate a critical asset threshold around which optimal coping strategies bifurcate. Using this approach we nd that that households holding assets above a critical asset threshold, who are also most likely to sell assets, are 64 percentage points less likely to anticipate doing so when an insurance payout is available. Households holding assets below the estimated threshold, who are likely to destabilize consumption, are 43 percentage points less likely to anticipate doing so with insurance. Together, these results suggest that insurance can help households to protect assets during crises, without having the deleterious eect on human capital investments.
    Keywords: Agribusiness, Risk and Uncertainty,
    Date: 2013
  24. By: Ferro, Esteban; Wilson, John S.; Otsuki, Tsunehiro
    Abstract: The authors create a standards restrictiveness index using newly available data on maximum residue levels of pesticides for 61 importing countries. The paper analyzes the impact that food safety standards have on international trade of agricultural products. The findings suggest that more restrictive standards are associated, on average, with a lower probability of observing trade. However, after controlling for sample selection and the proportion of exporting firms in a gravity model, the analysis finds that the effect of standards on trade intensity is indistinguishable from zero. This is consistent with the assumption that meeting stringent standards increases primarily the fixed costs of exporting. Once firms enter the market, however, standards do not impact the level of exports. The analysis also finds a greater marginal effect of BRICS (Brazil, Russia, India, China, and South Africa) standards on the probability of trade, relative to other countries'standards, keeping in mind however that on average BRICS standards are less restrictive. The analysis also suggests that exporters in low-income countries are more adversely affected by stricter standards.
    Keywords: Free Trade,Economic Theory&Research,Labor Policies,Food&Beverage Industry,Trade Law
    Date: 2013–06–01

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