nep-afr New Economics Papers
on Africa
Issue of 2018‒07‒16
four papers chosen by
Sam Sarpong
The University of Mines and Technology

  1. Impact of PTA on Trade Margins of LDCs in Sub- Saharan Africa: Evidence from the EBA By Ofei, Edmund Okraku
  2. Cohesive Institutions and Political Violence By Fetzer, Thiemo; Kyburz, Stephan
  3. Landmines and Spatial Development By Chiovelli, Giorgio; Michalopoulos, Stelios; Papaioannou, Elias
  4. Transborder Ethnic Kin and Local Prosperity: Evidence from Night-Time Light Intensity in Africa By Christophe Muller; Pierre Pecher

  1. By: Ofei, Edmund Okraku
    Abstract: This study investigates the impact of the EU preferential trade agreement of Everything but Arms on the extensive and intensive margins of exports of least developed countries in Sub-Saharan Africa. The extensive margin is defined as the quantity of exported products while the intensive margin is defined as the value of exported products. The study employs the difference-indifference estimator together with fixed effects for a country bilateral product data defined at the HS 6-digit level to investigate the impact for the period 1995-2015. The findings are that the EBA has not had any impact on both trade margins of LDCs in SSA although it has impacted positively on some specific industries. The study goes further to explain how the LDCs in SSA could benefit from the EBA through complementary policies.
    Keywords: trade margins, PTA, EBA, difference-in-difference, least developed countries
    JEL: F1 F13 F14 F4 O1 O24
    Date: 2017–05–23
  2. By: Fetzer, Thiemo (University of Warwick); Kyburz, Stephan (Center for Global Development)
    Abstract: Can institutionalized transfers of resource rents be a source of civil conflict? Are cohesive institutions better in managing distributive conflicts? We study these questions exploiting exogenous variation in revenue disbursements to local governments together with new data on local democratic institutions in Nigeria. We make three contributions. First, we document the existence of a strong link between rents and conflict far away from the location of the actual resource. Second, we show that distributive conflict is highly organized involving political militias and concentrated in the extent to which local governments are non-cohesive. Third, we show that democratic practice in form having elected local governments significantly weakens the causal link between rents and political violence. We document that elections (vis-a-vis appointments), by producing more cohesive institutions, vastly limit the extent to which distributional conflict between groups breaks out following shocks to the available rents. Throughout, we confirm these findings using individual level survey data.Keywords: conflict, ethnicity, natural resources, political economy, commodity prices. JEL Classification: Q33, O13, N52, R11, L71
    Date: 2018
  3. By: Chiovelli, Giorgio; Michalopoulos, Stelios; Papaioannou, Elias
    Abstract: Landmine contamination affects the lives of millions in many conflict-ridden countries long after the cessation of hostilities. Yet, little research exists on its impact on post-conflict recovery. In this study, we explore the economic consequences of landmine clearance in Mozambique, the only country that has moved from "heavily-contaminated" in 1992 to "mine-free" status in 2015. First, we compile a dataset detailing the evolution of clearance, collecting thousands of reports from the numerous demining actors. Second, we exploit the timing of demining to assess its impact on local economic activity, as reflected in satellite images of light density at night. The analysis reveals a moderate positive association that masks sizeable heterogeneity. Economic activity responds strongly to clearance of the transportation network, trade hubs, and more populous areas, while the demining-development association is weak in rural areas of low population density. Third, recognizing that landmine removal reconË figured the accessibility to the transportation infrastructure, we apply a "market-access" approach to quantify both its direct and indirect effects. The market-access estimates reveal substantial improvements on aggregate economic activity. The market-access benefits of demining are also present in localities without any contamination. Fourth, counterfactual policy simulations project considerable gains had the fragmented process of clearance in Mozambique been centrally coordinated, prioritizing clearance of the colonial transportation routes.
    Keywords: Civil War; infrastructure network; landmines; post-conflict recovery; Trade
    Date: 2018–06
  4. By: Christophe Muller (Aix-Marseille Univ., CNRS, EHESS, Centrale Marseille, AMSE); Pierre Pecher (Aix-Marseille Univ., CNRS, EHESS, Centrale Marseille, AMSE)
    Abstract: Ethnicity often occupies a core role in integrated social, economic, and political development processes, which have mostly been studied within specific countries. Across countries, social and economic development may be supported by political capabilities achieved by ethnic kin abroad, although there is little hard evidence on politico-economic interactions through ethnic networks. We fill this gap by providing the first robust empirical evidence of the substantial effects of political predominance of transborder ethnic kin on local economic development in Africa. This is achieved by specifying and estimating dynamic spatial models of geolocalised luminosity and matching these data with other geolocalised information on geographic, political, and ethnic characteristics. Spatial and ethnic network effects are separately identified and jointly analysed. Not only distinct spatial effects and transborder ethnic effects are exhibited, but also are their complex dynamics and spatial distribution features in terms of local development. The results draw attention to the relevance of a broader international perspective on policies affecting ethnic politics within countries.
    Keywords: local development, ethnic networks, institutions
    JEL: D72 R11 O43
    Date: 2018–05

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