nep-afr New Economics Papers
on Africa
Issue of 2018‒02‒19
five papers chosen by
Sam Sarpong
The University of Mines and Technology

  1. Human Smuggling and Intentions to Migrate: Global Evidence From a Supply Shock along Africa-to-Europe Migration Routes By Guido Friebel; Miriam Manchin; Mariapia Mendola; Giovanni Prarolo
  2. International Commodity Prices and Civil War Outbreak: New Evidence for Sub-Saharan Africa and Beyond By Antonio Ciccone
  3. The Impact of Fiscal Consolidations on Growth in Sub-Saharan Africa By Francisco Arizala; Jesus R Gonzalez-Garcia; Charalambos G Tsangarides; Mustafa Yenice
  4. Development in Africa By Riccardo Pelizzo; Abel Kinyondo; Zim Nwokora
  5. Education, Lifelong learning, Inequality and Financial access: Evidence from African countries By Vanessa Tchamyou

  1. By: Guido Friebel (Goethe University Frankfurt, CEPR and IZA); Miriam Manchin (University College of London); Mariapia Mendola (Università di Milano-Bicocca and IZA); Giovanni Prarolo (Università di Bologna)
    Abstract: Africa-to-Europe irregular migration depends heavily on human smuggling services. The demise of the Gaddafi regime in 2011 marked the end of a bilateral agreement between Italy and Libya and opened the Central Mediterranean Route for irregular border crossing. How did this remarkable increase in human smuggling services affect migration intentions in the rest of the region? This paper isolates a causal impact by exploiting the spatial dimension of the smuggling network and its change over time, which produced a heterogeneous decrease in bilateral migration distances between countries in Africa and Europe. We use this source of variation and a novel dataset of bilateral distances along irregular land and sea routes, combined with cross-country survey data on individual intentions to move from Africa to Europe between 2010 and 2012. Netting out pair- and country-by-time-specific fixed effects, we find a large negative effect of distance along smuggling routes on individual migration intentions. Shorter distances increase the willingness to migrate especially for youth, (medium) skilled individuals and those with a network abroad. The effect is stronger in origin countries not too far from Libya and with weak rule of law.
    Keywords: International Migration, Human Smuggling, Illegal Migration, Libyan Civil War
    JEL: K23 K42
    Date: 2018–01–29
  2. By: Antonio Ciccone
    Abstract: A new dataset by Bazzi and Blattman (2014) allows examining the effects of international commodity prices on the risk of civil war outbreak with more comprehensive data. I find that international commodity price downturns sparked civil wars in Sub-Saharan Africa. Another finding with the new dataset is that commodity price downturns also sparked civil wars beyond Sub-Saharan Africa since 1980. Effects are sizable relative to the baseline risk of civil war outbreak. My conclusions contrast with those of Bazzi and Blattman, who argue that the new dataset rejects that commodity price downturns cause civil wars. The reason is that I calculate commodity price shocks using time-invariant (fixed) export shares as commodity weights. Bazzi and Blattman also calculate commodity price shocks using export shares as commodity weights but but the exports shares they use are time-varying. Using time-invariant export shares as commodity weights ensures that time variation in price shocks solely re ects changes in international commodity prices. Price shocks based on time-varying export shares partly re ect (possibly endogenous) changes in the quantity and variety of countries' exports, which jeopardizes causal estimation.
    Keywords: civil wars, commodity price downturns
    JEL: E3 O1 Q1 Q10
    Date: 2018–01
  3. By: Francisco Arizala; Jesus R Gonzalez-Garcia; Charalambos G Tsangarides; Mustafa Yenice
    Abstract: This paper examines the output effects of changes in public expenditure and revenue in sub-Saharan African countries during 1990–2016. Fiscal multipliers in sub-Saharan Africa are somewhat smaller than those in advanced and emerging economies. The effect of changes in fiscal policy on output depends on the composition: cutting public investment has a larger effect on output than cutting public consumption or raising revenue. Episodes of fiscal consolidation have short- and medium-term output effects, but here, too, composition matters: fiscal consolidations based on reducing public investment have the largest effect on output, while fiscal consolidations based on revenue mobilization are less harmful than those based on public investment cuts. These findings suggest that the negative impact on growth can be mitigated through the design of fiscal adjustment and the accompanying policy environment.
    Keywords: Africa;Africa;Growth, fiscal consolidations, fiscal multipliers, local projections, General
    Date: 2017–12–14
  4. By: Riccardo Pelizzo (Nazarbayev University, Kazakhstan); Abel Kinyondo (University of Dar Es Salaam, Tanzania); Zim Nwokora (Deakin University, Australia)
    Abstract: The purpose of the chapter is to analyze Africa’s economic successes in the past half century, to understand not only what made it possible but also and more importantly what risk factors may eventually bring it to an end or compromise it. While it may not be possible for Africa to alter, for now, its position in the world system, it may nonetheless create the conditions for sustained economic growth and development by deepening democracy, enhancing the stability of political regimes and by reducing the incidence of tropical diseases.
    Keywords: Africa, development, world system, poverty, institutions, globalization, international organizations, FDIs, debt
    JEL: O1 O10 O11 O15 O16 O19
    Date: 2018–01
  5. By: Vanessa Tchamyou (Antwerp, Belgium)
    Abstract: This study investigates the role of financial access in modulating the effect of education and lifelong learning on inequality in 48 African countries for the period 1996 to 2014. Lifelong learning is conceived and measured as the combined knowledge gained from primary through tertiary education while the three educational indicators are: primary school enrolment; secondary school enrolment and tertiary school enrolment. Financial development dynamics are measured with financial system deposits (liquid liabilities), financial system activity (credit) and financial system efficiency (deposits/credit). Three measures of inequality are employed notably: the Gini coefficient; the Atkinson index and the Palma ratio. The estimation strategy is based on Generalised Method of Moments. The following findings are established. First, primary school enrolment interacts with all financial channels to exert negative effects on the Gini index. Second, lifelong learning has negative net effects on the Gini index through financial deposit and efficiency channels. Third, for the most part, the other educational levels do not significantly influence inequality through financial access channels. Policy implications are discussed.
    Keywords: Education; Lifelong Learning; Inequality; Financial development; Africa
    JEL: I28 I20 I30 O16 O55
    Date: 2018–01

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