nep-afr New Economics Papers
on Africa
Issue of 2018‒10‒01
five papers chosen by
Sam Sarpong
The University of Mines and Technology

  1. FinTech in Sub-Saharan Africa: What Has Worked Well, and What Hasn't By David Yermack
  2. Africa and the New Silk Roads By Thierry Pairault
  3. Credibility Premium Estimation of Insurance Claims in Nigeria By Queensley Chukwudum
  4. Impact of ECOWAS Common External Tariffs on Food Security and Nutrition in West Africa By Durand-Morat, Alvaro; Diagne, Mandiaye; Wailes, Eric
  5. Long-run spatial inequality in South Africa: early settlement patterns and separate development By Dieter von Fintel

  1. By: David Yermack
    Abstract: The FinTech sector has begun to grow rapidly in sub-Saharan Africa. I document far greater adoption of social media, digital currency, ride sharing, and other FinTech applications in countries with a common law legal heritage compared to those with a civil law system, suggesting that legal origin plays a critical role in setting the stage for growth through entrepreneurship in the developing world. The electrical, telecom, and Internet infrastructure required for FinTech has been built out more extensively in common law countries. Financial inclusion outcomes are also better in emerging markets that have a common law heritage.
    JEL: O14 O17 O30 O55 R00
    Date: 2018–09
  2. By: Thierry Pairault (CECMC-CCJ - Centre d'études sur la Chine moderne et contemporaine - EHESS - École des hautes études en sciences sociales - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique)
    Abstract: This contribution raises the question of the place the New Silk Roads strategy could reserve for Africa and its 54 economies. To answer this question, we will begin by highlighting the very limited economic importance of Africa for China (first investment, second trade), and then I will examine the strategic role that Africa as a whole and African states are likely to play for China. This research will be conducted on the basis of existing documents, whether official reports (administrative or management), scientific studies or more journalistic information. Wherever possible, it will favour first-hand Chinese documents.
    Keywords: China, Africa, New Silk Roads
    Date: 2018–08–31
  3. By: Queensley Chukwudum (PAUSTI - Pan African University Institute of Basic Sciences, Technology and Innovation)
    Abstract: In this paper one of the foundational theories in actuarial science-the Empirical Bayes credibility theory model 1 (Buhlmann model), is applied to estimate the pure risk premium based on the aggregate net claim data of 5 years (2009-2013). This involves estimating the credibility premium in the next year (2014). Five different classes of risk are considered from the insurance industry in Nigeria-fire, accident, motor, marine and, oil and gas insurance portfolios. Verification of the unbiasedness of the structural parameters of the credibility factor is presented. A chi-square goodness of fit test is carried out to compare the estimated values with the actual claim data. The result shows that there is no significant difference between the estimated values and the actual values for the year 2014.
    Keywords: EBCT model 1 (Buhlmann Model), Credibility Premium,Additional Keywords and Phrases: Insurance Portfolios, Unbiased Estimators, Aggregate Net Claims, Chi-square goodness of fit test
    Date: 2018–08–09
  4. By: Durand-Morat, Alvaro; Diagne, Mandiaye; Wailes, Eric
    Abstract: Following the 2008 food crisis, West African governments have sought to achieve food security. Regional market integration is one element of this food security policy thrust. The Economic Community of West African countries (ECOWAS) is engaged in the creation of a Customs Union. Member countries negotiated a common external tariff (CET) currently under implementation. The CET is organized into five different tariff bands of 0, 5, 10, 20, and 35 percent to accommodate the large variations in protection granted across the region. The implementation of the CET represents a challenge to many individual ECOWAS countries since it may generate significant and potentially destabilizing welfare distribution impacts. The objective of this study is to evaluate the impact of ECOWAS CET on the rice sectors and the food security situation of member countries, and the spillover effects on the international market. Rice has become a dominant food staple and consequently West Africa has become the largest global rice-importing region, therefore it is important to understand likely impacts of regional integration on this sector. We use a supply-chain, partial, spatial equilibrium model of the global rice economy calibrated to the prevailing market conditions for the period 2013-2015. The findings highlight the impact of the CET on rice production, consumption, bilateral trade, and consumer, producer, and government welfare at the regional and global level, and the potential policy implications of such changes.
    Keywords: Agricultural and Food Policy
    Date: 2018–01–17
  5. By: Dieter von Fintel (Department of Economics, Stellenbosch University)
    Abstract: New economic geography theories predict that historically densely settled areas also become more industrialised. Industrial agglomeration has therefore cultivated spatial inequalities in all parts of the world. South Africa presents an interesting case study, where institutional failures interrupted the ‘usual’ agglomeration process. On the one hand, current day metropolitan regions are located in historically densely populated areas. On the other hand, apartheid-era homelands also had highly concentrated populations, but did not industrialise to the same extent as other parts of South Africa. Much earlier in history, following the mfecane, these locations attracted migrants in search of favourable agricultural conditions and physical security in the face of conflict (they were high rainfall, rugged areas). The benefit of settling in these areas, however, only remained prior to imposed restrictions on land ownership (1913 Land Act) and movement of people (during apartheid). This paper decomposes modern spatial inequality, and establishes that agglomerations and historical institutional failures explain large proportions of spatial inequality. Furthermore, the homelands wage penalty reverses once these controls are introduced into various models: had agglomeration taken its course without institutional constraints, the homelands would likely have developed into high paying local economies. While new economic geography theories hold in the urban core, the densely populated former homelands did not follow this trajectory. Spatial inequality is therefore more severe than it would have been had institutional failures not prevented the former homelands from industrialising at the same pace as other historically densely populated areas.
    Keywords: Spatial inequality, economic geography, apartheid homelands, African economic history
    JEL: N97 R11 D31
    Date: 2018

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