nep-afr New Economics Papers
on Africa
Issue of 2013‒11‒02
fourteen papers chosen by
Quentin Wodon
World Bank

  1. Cost-benefit analysis of the african risk capacity facility: By Clarke, Daniel J.; Hill, Ruth Vargas
  2. Agricultural commercialization, land expansion, and homegrown land-scale farmers: Insights from Ghana: By Chapoto, Antony; Mabiso, Athur; Bonsu, Adwinmea
  3. Is Climbing Difficult? A Gendered Analysis on the Use of Financial Services in Ghana and South Africa By Annim, Samuel Kobina; Arun, Thankom
  4. Land constraints and agricultural intensification in Ethiopia: A village-level analysis of high-potential areas: By Headey, Derek D.; Dereje, Mekdim; Ricker-Gilbert, Jacob; Josephson, Anna; Taffesse, Alemayehu Seyoum
  5. Africa's Got Work to Do: Employment Prospects in the New Century By Louise Fox; Cleary Haines; Jorge Huerta Munoz; Alun H. Thomas
  6. Links between tenure security and food security: Evidence from Ethiopia: By Hagos, Hosaena Ghebru; Holden, Stein
  7. Usage of Financial Services in South Africa: Perceptions Matter By Kostov, Philip; Arun, Thankom; Annim, Samuel Kobina
  8. Economywide impact of maize export bans on agricultural growth and household welfare in Tanzania: A Dynamic Computable General Equilibrium Model Analysis: By Diao, Xinshen; Kennedy, Adam; Mabiso, Athur; Pradesha, Angga
  9. Agricultural mechanization patterns in Nigeria: Insights from farm household typology and agricultural household model simulation: By Takeshima, Hiroyuki; Nin-Pratt, Alejandro; Diao, Xinshen
  10. What determines the suspension of budget support in Sub-Saharan Africa? By Molenaers, Nadia; Gagiano, Anna; Smets, Lode; Dellepiane, Sebastian
  11. Forced displacement and behavioral change: An empirical study of returnee households in the Nuba Mountains By Asha Abdel Rahim; Dany Jaimovich; Aleksi Ylönen
  12. The impact of food prices shocks in Uganda: First-order versus long-run effects: By Van Campenhout, Bjorn; Pauw, Karl; Minot, Nicholas
  13. A sticky information Phillips curve for South Africa By Monique Reid; Gideon du Rand
  14. Assessment of the capacity, incentives, and performance of agricultural extension agents in western Democratic Republic of the Congo: By Ragasa, Catherine; Ulimwengu, John M.; Randriamamonjy, Josee; Badibanga, Thaddée

  1. By: Clarke, Daniel J.; Hill, Ruth Vargas
    Abstract: The African Risk Capacity (ARC), has been proposed as a pan-Africa drought risk pool to insure against drought risk in Africa south of the Sahara. If fully operationalized, the ARC will mark a major change in how donors fund emergency support to countries in Africa during times of need. In this paper, we undertake a cost-benefit analysis of the ARC pool and discuss how lessons can inform the design of the ARC.
    Keywords: Natural disasters, Risk management, drought,
    Date: 2013
  2. By: Chapoto, Antony; Mabiso, Athur; Bonsu, Adwinmea
    Abstract: The past decade has seen several African countries increasing their agricultural growth, a trend largely underpinned by increases in land area cultivated instead of productivity increases. Meanwhile, scholars debate whether Africa should pursue a strategy of large-scale or smallholder farms, paying little attention to a special group of smallholder farmers who have transitioned to become medium- and large-scale farmers. This study, therefore, begins to analyze this group of farmers, using qualitative data from in-depth interviews and focus group discussions in Ghana. We analyze their characteristics, ingredients of farm-size expansion, and commercialization.
    Keywords: Farm size, large scale farming, Commercialization, Agricultural productivity, Land acquisitions,
    Date: 2013
  3. By: Annim, Samuel Kobina (University of Central Lancashire); Arun, Thankom (University of Central Lancashire)
    Abstract: This paper examines the gender gaps in the use of higher-order financial services such as investment and insurance, draws on the FinMark national-level data from Ghana and South Africa. The main observation is that females in South Africa are more likely to use general financial and investment products than in Ghana. The results also reveal that in Ghana, a substantial part of the gender differentials in the use of financial services can be attributed to unobserved characteristics, mostly related to attitude and perceptions that inhibit women's use of financial services.
    Keywords: gender gaps, types and levels of access to finance, Ghana and South Africa
    JEL: G21 J16
    Date: 2013–10
  4. By: Headey, Derek D.; Dereje, Mekdim; Ricker-Gilbert, Jacob; Josephson, Anna; Taffesse, Alemayehu Seyoum
    Abstract: Highland Ethiopia is one of the most densely populated regions of Africa and has long been associated with both Malthusian disasters and Boserupian agricultural intensification. This paper explores the race between these two countervailing forces, with the goal of informing two important policy questions. First, how do rural Ethiopians adapt to land constraints? And second, do land constraints significantly influence welfare outcomes in rural Ethiopia?
    Keywords: Smallholders, Population density, Farm size, Intensification, Agricultural productivity, Land use, Land allocation, Land management,
    Date: 2013
  5. By: Louise Fox; Cleary Haines; Jorge Huerta Munoz; Alun H. Thomas
    Abstract: Estimates of the current and future structure of employment in sub-Saharan Africa (2005–20) are obtained based on household survey estimates for 28 countries and an elasticity-type model that relates employment to economic growth and demographic outcomes. Agriculture still employs the majority of the labor force although workers are shifting slowly out of the sector. Sub-Saharan Africa’s projected rapid labor force growth, combined with a low baseline level of private sector wage employment, means that even if sub-Saharan Africa realizes another decade of strong growth, the share of labor force employed in private firms is not expected to rise substantially. Governments need to undertake measures to attract private enterprises that provide wage employment, but they also need to focus on improving productivity in the traditional and informal sectors as these will continue to absorb the majority of the labor force.
    Keywords: Employment;Sub-Saharan Africa;Labor markets;Agricultural sector;Private sector;Wages;Cross country analysis;employment, labor force, agriculture, industry, services, wage employment, household enterprises, public employment, Sub-Saharan Africa.
    Date: 2013–10–01
  6. By: Hagos, Hosaena Ghebru; Holden, Stein
    Abstract: This study, thus, uses five rounds of household panel data from Tigray, Ethiopia, collected in the period 1998–2010 to assess the impacts of a land registration and certification program that aimed to strengthen tenure security and how it has contributed to increased food availability and thus food security in this food-deficit region.
    Keywords: Land tenure, food security, land tenure reform, certification, basic needs, Gender, Women, household data, land registration,
    Date: 2013
  7. By: Kostov, Philip (University of Central Lancashire); Arun, Thankom (University of Central Lancashire); Annim, Samuel Kobina (University of Central Lancashire)
    Abstract: This study investigates the access to and usage of financial services in South Africa. Financial services are categorised in three types namely; general accounts and services, investment/savings and insurance/assurance. Taking into account the interactions between usage of different types of financial services, we use multivariate simultaneous probit specification to examine the effect of financial perception. Our results suggests that after controlling for endogeneity of choices and a range of control variables, financial perceptions are robust determinant of access to financial services. The impact of financial perception however reduces and gradually disappears as one moves up the financial access ladder towards more advanced financial products and services. In a policy context, targeting demand-side factors to increase access to and use of financial services is advisable. This targeting however can only be successful if it is tuned to specific basic financial services and products.
    Keywords: financial, perception, behaviour, general accounts, investment, insurance, South Africa
    JEL: O16 N27 R20
    Date: 2013–10
  8. By: Diao, Xinshen; Kennedy, Adam; Mabiso, Athur; Pradesha, Angga
    Abstract: We study the impact of export bans in Tanzania using a computable general equilibrium model. We find that although maize is an important food crop in Tanzania, its contribution to food price inflation is rather limited, and that banning cross-border maize exports lowers the national food price index by only 0.6-2.4 percent compared with the free-export scenario. The benefits of lower prices are captured primarily by urban households, but maize producer prices decrease by 7-26 percent, depending on the region. We also find that the export ban decreases the wage rate for low-skilled labor and the returns to land, while returns to nonagricultural capital and wage rate for the skilled labor increase, further hurting poor rural households and thus increasing poverty for the country as a whole.
    Keywords: exports, Commodities, staple crops, maize, Computable general equilibrium (CGE), export bans, trade policies, food price crisis, Food prices, price spikes, Commodity markets,
    Date: 2013
  9. By: Takeshima, Hiroyuki; Nin-Pratt, Alejandro; Diao, Xinshen
    Keywords: mechanization, households, productivity, Typology, Cluster analysis,
    Date: 2013
  10. By: Molenaers, Nadia; Gagiano, Anna; Smets, Lode; Dellepiane, Sebastian
    Abstract: Since the turn of the millennium the aid business has witnessed an important shift in the conceptualization and practice of aid delivery. The move towards harmonized and aligned approaches, including the need to make aid more predictable and flexible, introduced the budget support modality. Budget support (BS) was designed as a financing modality to support poverty reduction efforts, which was to be used quite selectively. Only countries with a good policy environment and a government demonstrably committed to poverty reduction were to be granted this flexible aid modality. Ownership was considered key because experience had shown that conditionality, particularly the kind that refers to reforms or policy changes which carry some political sensitiveness, tend to be ineffective. In reality a lot of donors started to channel parts of their aid through this fashionable new millennium flavoured aid modality without being particularly selective. As a result, aid predictability was put under strain almost immediately because donors started to use BS suspensions as a sanctioning mechanism whenever a ‘troubling’ event in the recipient country was considered a (potential) ‘breach’ in the trust relation between donor and recipient. ‘Troubling’ events could range from corruption scandals, human rights violations or electoral fraud to seemingly more ‘prosaic’ onsets like the late production of a key report. Since a number of suspensions were directly linked to regime issues, BS suspensions were thus tied in with the use of political conditionalities and served as a stick to lever for change (Hayman 2011; Molenaers et al. 2010; Faust et al. 2012).
    Keywords: Sub-Saharan Africa; budget support; aid
    Date: 2013–09
  11. By: Asha Abdel Rahim (University of Juba); Dany Jaimovich (Goethe University Frankfurt, Faculty of Economics and Business Administration); Aleksi Ylönen (Peace Research Institute Frankfurt)
    Abstract: After the end of a civil war that lasted for more than two decades, in 2005 hundreds of thousands of displaced people started returning to their communities of origin in the Nuba Mountains of Sudan. We use unique data gathered shortly after the end of the conflict in eight villages to describe the characteristics of the returnees vis-a-vis those of non-displaced households. We find important differences between them. Returned households have fewer assets than those who stayed during the conflict and are less involved in the production of cash crops. Even though returnees seem to face worse economic conditions, we find evidence that they tend to perform better on different health indicators, including a lower probability of disease-related mortality in their families. We explore the hypothesis that behavioral changes related to the experiences during displacement can explain the latter result. In particular, we use a detailed set of variables related to hygiene and sanitary habits and show that returnees are more likely to adopt these measures. We further attempt to provide causal evidence of this hypothesis using instrumental variable estimations as a way to deal with the potential bias induced by self-selection into displacement and return.
    Keywords: Forced displacement; behavioral change; conflict; Nuba Mountains; Sudan; Africa.
    JEL: O15 O12 O55 Q15
    Date: 2013–10
  12. By: Van Campenhout, Bjorn; Pauw, Karl; Minot, Nicholas
    Abstract: We look at the immediate effects of these shocks faced by households in Uganda on their poverty and well-being. In addition, we look at the economywide impact in the long run when all markets have settled at a new equilibrium. We find that in the short run, poverty has increased substantially. However, in the longer run, we find welfare levels of rural farm households in particular to rise sharply, primarily as a result of increased returns to farm labor and agricultural land coupled with improved market prices for output sold.
    Keywords: Food prices, Wellbeing, Poverty, Computable general equilibrium (CGE), Agricultural development, Commodities,
    Date: 2013
  13. By: Monique Reid (Department of Economics, University of Stellenbosch); Gideon du Rand (Department of Economics, University of Stellenbosch)
    Abstract: Mankiw and Reis (2002) propose the Sticky Information Phillips Curve as an alternative to the standard New Keynesian Phillips Curve, to address empirical shortcomings in the latter. In this paper, a Sticky Information Phillips curve for South Africa is estimated, which requires data on expectations of current period variables conditional on sequences of earlier period information sets. In the literature the choice of proxies for the inflation expectations and output gap measures are usually not well motivated. In this paper, we test the sensitivity of model fit and parameter estimates to a variety of proxies. We find that parameter estimates for output gap proxies based either on a simple Hodrik-Prescott filter application or on a Kalman filter estimation of an aggregate production function are significant and reasonable, whereas methods employing direct calculation of marginal costs do not yield acceptable results. Estimates of information updating probability range between 0.69 and 0.81. This is somewhat higher than suggested by alternative methods using micro-evidence (0.65 – 0.70 (Reid, 2012)). Lastly, we find that neither parameter estimates nor model diagnostics are sensitive to the choice of expectation proxy, whether it be constructed from surveyed expectations or the ad hoc VAR based forecasting methods.
    Keywords: South Africa, sticky information, Phillips curve
    JEL: E31 E3 E52
    Date: 2013
  14. By: Ragasa, Catherine; Ulimwengu, John M.; Randriamamonjy, Josee; Badibanga, Thaddée
    Abstract: This paper provides an in-depth review of the agricultural extension system of DRC including an analysis of its policies and legal framework, organization, and management; links to critical institutions; and capacity and incentive of different actors in the system. This review involved document analyses, interviews with key informants, and surveys of 107 extension organizations and 162 extension agents in 156 randomly selected villages in western DRC. This review suggests serious funding constraints, human resource management problems, no linkage and coordination within the extension system and with research and education systems, and a majority of underserved communities and farmers. This review also highlights a good opportunity given the huge human resources (more than 11,000 agents) deployed into the sectors and territories as part of the Ministry’s agricultural inspection system.
    Keywords: Agricultural extension services, Capacity building, Incentives, agricultural transformation, Reform, advisory service,
    Date: 2013

This nep-afr issue is ©2013 by Quentin Wodon. It is provided as is without any express or implied warranty. It may be freely redistributed in whole or in part for any purpose. If distributed in part, please include this notice.
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