nep-afr New Economics Papers
on Africa
Issue of 2014‒08‒20
ten papers chosen by
Sam Sarpong
The University of Mines and Technology

  1. Politics, political settlements and social change in post-colonial Rwanda By Frederick Golooba-Mutebi
  2. China’s Development Finance to Africa: A Media-Based Approach to Data Collection By Austin Strange; Bradley Parks; Michael J. Tierney; Andreas Fuchs; Axel Dreher; Vijaya Ramachandran
  3. Four Instruments to Strengthen Financial Integration in Sub-Saharan Africa By Amadou SY
  4. Their Suffering, Our Burden? How Congolese Refugees Affect the Ugandan Population By Merle Kreibaum
  5. Sudan: Staff Monitored Program-Staff Report; Press Release; and Statement by the Executive Director for Sudan By International Monetary Fund. Middle East and Central Asia Dept.
  6. Honey production systems (Apis mellifera L.) in Kaffa, Sheka and Bench-Maji zones of Ethiopia By Shenkute, Awraris Getachew; Getachew, Yemisrach; Assefa, Dejen; Adgaba, Nuru; Ganga, Gebeyehu; Abebe, Workneh
  7. Is Democracy Eluding Sub-Saharan Africa? By Carolyn Chisadza and Manoel Bittencourt
  8. Briquettes From Solid Waste: A substitute For Charcoal in Burundi By M. Mizero; Théophile Ndikumana; Céline Gisèle Jung
  9. Using evidence and operational responses to accelerate gender equality in Kenya By Torkelsson, Asa
  10. Lesotho : a safety net to end extreme poverty By Smith, W. James; Mistiaen, Emma; Guven, Melis; Morojele, Morabo

  1. By: Frederick Golooba-Mutebi
    Abstract: Until 1994 Rwanda's post-colonial history was marked by episodes of political violence, attempted wars, and wars of different durations. Feeding the violence was the absence of an elite consensus about how best to take Rwanda forward after colonial rule ended, the rules for doing so, and the roles to be played by the holders and losers of power. This paper explores key aspects of Rwanda's political evolution from independence to-date. The critical stages are the events popularly known as the 1959 social revolution that preceded independence in 1962; the period from 1962 to the overthrow of Kayibanda's First Republic in 1973; from the Habyarimana-led military coup to 1994; and the Rwanda Patriotic Front -led post-genocide period. The paper examines the different political coalitions that have ruled the country since independence, their impact on political stability and their role in catalysing or influencing the cycles of turmoil with which it is associated. In the case of the current coalition, this paper also provides a glimpse into the efforts they have made to promote the wellbeing of ordinary Rwandans. It first charts the historical origins and the current state of drivers of instability and elite fragmentation. It then identifies the nature of interactions between drivers of instability and political settlements over time, and their impact on governance and the pursuit of development.
    Date: 2013
  2. By: Austin Strange; Bradley Parks; Michael J. Tierney; Andreas Fuchs; Axel Dreher; Vijaya Ramachandran
    Abstract: How big is China’s aid to Africa? Does it complement or undermine the efforts of traditional donors? China releases little information, and outside estimates of the size and nature of Chinese aid vary widely. In an effort to overcome this problem, AidData, based at the College of William and Mary, has compiled a database of thousands of media reports on Chinese-backed projects in Africa from 2000 to 2011. The database includes information on 1,673 projects in 51 African countries and on $75 billion in commitments of official finance. This paper describes the new database methodology, key findings, and possible applications of the data, which is being made publicly available for the first time. The paper and database offer a new tool set for researchers, policymakers, journalists, and civil-society organizations working to understand China’s growing role in Africa. The paper also discusses the challenges of quantifying Chinese development activities, introduces AidData’s Media-Based Data Collection (MBDC) methodology, provides an overview of Chinese development finance in Africa as tracked by this new database, and discusses the potential and limitations of MBDC as a resource for tracking development finance. This working paper accompanies the release of AidData’s Chinese Official Finance to Africa Dataset, Version 1.0, available for download at, and a live, interactive database platform (at AidData’s MBDC methodology is also available for download at
    Keywords: China, development finance, foreign aid, non-DAC donors, emerging donors, southsouth cooperation, media-based data collection.
    JEL: F13 F54 O24
    Date: 2013–04
  3. By: Amadou SY (Africa Growth Initiative - Brookings Institution)
    Abstract: This paper proposes four tools to strengthen financial integration in sub-Saharan Africa. The first tool, “political commitment devices” can ensure steady progress on the road to an economic community. For instance, stronger regional institutions can monitor progress towards integration and encourage policymakers to respect their regional commitments. Second, the economic benefits from financial integration are better secured when countries achieve a number of “threshold conditions,” including minimum levels of financial development and governance. Third, full financial integration requires the “trinity” of equality of access, rules, and treatment. Policymakers have to eliminate entry barriers, and once foreign institutions enter domestic markets, refrain from discriminating against them. In addition, policymakers must harmonize regulations further and build capacity, especially in banking supervision. Fourth, improving the “plumbing” of financial integration—financial infrastructure—by reducing transaction costs, can provide quick gains. Innovation in mobile payments can help reduce such costs, and regulators need to balance the associated benefits and risks.
    JEL: F36 G21 G28
    Date: 2014–07
  4. By: Merle Kreibaum (University of Goettingen)
    Abstract: The situation of refugees all over the world gets increasingly protracted, as civil wars in their home countries are not resolved. Especially in developing countries, the sudden inflow and long-term presence of refugees can represent a significant strain on infrastructure and markets. Uganda has an exemplary legal framework in its Refugee Act aiming at the economic independence from aid of refugees and the inclusion of public services for hosts and the displaced. Three waves of two different household surveys are used, in order to employ a difference-in-differences approach. In doing so, the natural experiment of two sudden inflows is exploited, while simultane¬ously controlling for long-term trends in refugee numbers. The findings presented here suggest that Uganda can benefit from its decades long experience in hosting refugees as well as its policy frame¬work when it comes to the economic welfare and the public service provision of its nationals. Yet, there are small warning signals regarding social integration. This could motivate policy makers to look further into this issue and possibly increase efforts to reduce prejudices between the groups.
    Date: 2014–08
  5. By: International Monetary Fund. Middle East and Central Asia Dept.
    Abstract: EXECUTIVE SUMMARY Context: Sudan is a fragile state mired in a heavy debt burden, international sanctions, and volatile domestic and regional political environments. These problems, together with limited revenue mobilization, are constraining Sudan’s growth prospects and poverty reduction efforts. The economic situation worsened following the secession of South Sudan in 2011, resulting in the buildup of large economic imbalances. The authorities have embarked on a stabilization program and are expecting that a return of peace in South Sudan will ensure continuation of oil flows, which are crucial for sustaining the government renewed adjustment process resumed last September. Focus of the Staff-Monitored Program (SMP): In the attached Letter of Intent, dated March 7, 2014, the authorities requested a new SMP covering the period January– December, 2014. The objective of the SMP is to restore macroeconomic stability, strengthen social safety nets, and develop the required reforms to refocus the economy on its non- resource sector and lay the groundwork for sustainable economic growth. Risks to the SMP: Risks are mainly tilted to the downside. The social unrest that followed the announcement of the policy measures in September 2013 has abated, but the situation remains fragile. Security conditions remain volatile in several parts of the country, and the current standoff in South Sudan may hinder the flow of oil to Port Sudan. Furthermore, the forthcoming presidential elections in 2015 is already fueling political uncertainty, and complicating the economic policy-making process. Policy recommendations: The main recommendations from the 2013 Article IV consultation were: (i) a fiscal adjustment in the context of the 2014 budget framed in a medium-term strategy, including a gradual phasing-out of fuel subsidies, and a strengthening of social safety nets; (ii) a tighter monetary stance to contain inflation and lessen exchange rate pressures; (iii) further exchange rate flexibility to improve external competitiveness; and (iv) improvement of the business environment to boost private sector- led growth. Debt relief prospects: Relief is predicated on reaching out to creditors, normalizing relations with international financial institutions, and establishing a track record of cooperation with the IMF on policies and payments. Arrears to the Fund: Sudan has been in arrears to the Fund since July 1984. As of end- February 2014, those arrears amounted to SDR 981.5 million.
    Keywords: Staff-monitored programs;Regional shocks;South Sudan;Fiscal policy;Fiscal reforms;Monetary policy;Exchange rate policy;Bank restructuring;Economic indicators;Staff Reports;Letters of Intent;Press releases;Sudan;
    Date: 2014–07–15
  6. By: Shenkute, Awraris Getachew; Getachew, Yemisrach; Assefa, Dejen; Adgaba, Nuru; Ganga, Gebeyehu; Abebe, Workneh
    Abstract: Southwest parts of Ethiopia particularly Kaffa, Sheka and Bench-Maji zones are endowed with very diverse and dense natural forests. This favours for the existence of dense honeybee population and production of large volume of honey. However, detail information on honey production systems of the area was lacking. In this study five representative districts were selected and data on beekeeping practice and its major constraints were collected. Traditional beekeeping system is practiced by more than 99% of beekeepers. The average traditional hives owned/household in Masha and Gesha were significantly higher (P
    Keywords: Forest, beekeeping practice, honey, beekeepers, Ethiopia
    JEL: D1 D13 D19 D2 Y50 Y80 Z10
    Date: 2012–01
  7. By: Carolyn Chisadza and Manoel Bittencourt
    Abstract: This paper analyses the modernisation hypothesis in the sub-Saharan African region. Using a sample of 48 countries from 1960 to 2010 and dynamic panel data analysis, we find a significant and negative relationship between income and democracy, an indication that the hypothesis may not hold in the region. We also investigate further by distinguishing between exogenous and endogenous democracy. The former explains whether external factors, such as the end of the Cold War, as well as regional influence, play a role in the process of democratisation in sub-Saharan Africa. Results indicate that the end of the Cold War has a significant influence on the democratisation process probably because of the pro-democracy policies advocated by international organisations, while regional organisations play no significant role in the region. We also obtain significant results for democracy when we proxy for international organisations with an IMF programme variable.
    Keywords: Democracy, Sub-Saharan Africa
    JEL: O10 O55 P16
    Date: 2014
  8. By: M. Mizero; Théophile Ndikumana; Céline Gisèle Jung
    Abstract: In Burundi, the problem of solid waste management is acute as dependence on wood and charcoal as solid fuel is creating a major problem of deforestation [1]. The purpose of this work is to promote material and energy valorization of solid waste in Bujumbura where a preliminary study has been realized showing the inventory with the composition and the quantification of MSW (0.6 kg/day.capita). The present work is especially devoted the characterization of the briquettes made by using specific solid waste in a process developed by Bioernergy Burundi enterprise [2]. A random sampling of 3 briquettes from a 5kg package is used for the determination of their characteristics to meet the criteria to be used as solid fuel substitute. Materials to be characterized in this work are briquettes manufactured by Bionergy Burundi Enterprise [2] and their ashes. The process is using a specific solid waste mixture. The mixture consists of residues of charcoal, dry Eragrostis grass, sawdust and wood shavings from the furniture manufacturing workshops, rice hulls from the husking units and MSW (partially sorted). The mixture, in well-known proportions of the listed waste, is then heated (mainly dried), milled and introduced into a mould to produce the briquettes (L~20 cm and Φ~ 7cm). Results on proximate analysis of the briquettes are detailed in this work. The mean humidity content is in the order of 20%. Results on dry matter show an ash content of 44%, a high volatile matter of 42%. The value of the fixed carbon content is presented and is very depended on the sampling method. Fixed carbon content lies between 13% and 26%. The calorimetric bomb method (ISO 1928) has been used to evaluate the gross calorific value. The lower calorific value is then calculated (LCV~11 MJ/kg). On the other hand, to be able to use safely the briquettes as substituted solid fuel, further investigation was made to evaluate the presence of pollutants. XRF and XRD measurements were performed on the briquettes and their ashes respectively. Elemental analysis and detection of crystallized compounds are presented showing only traces of pollutants. The main conclusion of this work is that preliminary results on Bioenergy Burundi briquettes are encouraging and would incited to consider this path for the valorization of some solid waste as substitution solid fuel for charcoal. Currently, in the city of Bujumbura, energy needs for a growing population are real and the use of these briquettes as a substitution solid fuel could be one of the alternate routes.
    Keywords: waste, substitution fuel, briquettes, energy valorisation
    Date: 2014–06–16
  9. By: Torkelsson, Asa
    Abstract: Agriculture is a main contributor to pro-poor growth in Africa, but gender inequalities in the sector hold back agricultural growth and affect household welfare negatively. The sector has been characterized by a lack of gender-disaggregated data and patch
    Keywords: poverty reduction, agriculture, gender, markets, Kenya
    Date: 2014
  10. By: Smith, W. James; Mistiaen, Emma; Guven, Melis; Morojele, Morabo
    Abstract: This report shows that while more inclusive growth is the ultimate solution to poverty in Lesotho, the country can and should use selective social transfers to reduce poverty more rapidly among the extreme poor. But because the majority of the transfers are received by people who are not among the extreme poor there is room for increasing the efficiency and effectiveness of spending on safety nets which. These programs should be productive and concentrate on the extreme poor Basotho. In the long run, Lesotho should move towards a more consolidated safety net and strengthen existing programs, such as the Child Grants Program, that already provide some important and positive outcomes and enjoy strong popular and political support.
    Keywords: Safety Nets and Transfers,Rural Poverty Reduction,Regional Economic Development,Services&Transfers to Poor
    Date: 2013–06–01

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