nep-agr New Economics Papers
on Agricultural Economics
Issue of 2015‒12‒08
thirty papers chosen by

  1. Achieving food security in the face of climate change By Delzeit, Ruth; Sipangule, Kacana; Thiele, Rainer
  2. Changing Inter-Sectoral Linkages: Role of Technology Adoption in Agricultural Growth By Mehta, Niti
  3. Incorporating Environmental Externalities in Total Factor Productivity Analysis: The Case of Soil Erosion in Nigerian Agriculture By Chuku, Chuku
  4. The economic impact of climate change on small farms in Nigeria: A Ricardian approach By Odozi, John C.
  5. Food Security in India: The Imperative and Its Challenges By Sudha Narayanan
  6. Empowering Communities and Countries to Conserve Biodiversity at the National and ASEAN Levels: Status, Challenges, and Ways Forward By Percy E. SAJISE
  7. Climate Change and India: Adaptation GAP (2015) By Garg, Amit; Mishra, Vimal; Dholakia, Hem H.
  9. Do agri-environmental schemes help reduce herbicide use? Evidence from a natural experiment in France By Laure Kuhfuss; Julie Subervie
  10. Communal Land and Agricultural Productivity By Charles Gottlieb; Jan Grobovsek
  11. Expropriation and the Location of Farmland Investment: a theoretical investigation into the Land Rush By Rosete, Alfredo
  12. Water Stress on U.S. Power Production at Decadal Time Horizons By Poulomi Ganguli; Devashish Kumar; Auroop R. Ganguly
  13. Price Discovery in European Agricultural Markets: When Do Futures Contracts Matter? By Philipp Adämmer; Martin T. Bohl
  14. Reducing the Generosity and Increasing the Conditionality of Disability Benefits: Turning the Supertanker or Squeezing the Balloon? By Barbara Broadway; Duncan McVicar
  15. The Impact of a Food for Education Program on Schooling in Cambodia By Maria Cheung; Maria Perrotta Berlin
  16. Sins of the Fathers: The Intergenerational Legacy of the 1959-1961 Great Chinese Famine on Children’s Cognitive Development By Chih Ming Tan; Zhibo Tan; Xiaobo Zhang
  17. Less developed countries´ policy space in the emerging governance regime to food safety: Uruguayan trade negotiations to access high quality meat markets By Lucía Pittaluga Fonseca; Cristina Zurbriggen
  18. The Silence of the Lambs: Payment for Carnivore Conservation and Sheep Farming By Anders Skonhoft
  19. Impact of EU’s agricultural and fisheries policies on the migration of third country nationals to the EU By Alan Matthews;
  20. Is the price elasticity of demand for coal in China increasing? By Paul J. Burke; Hua Liao
  21. Nudging farmers to sign agri-environmental contracts: the effects of a collective bonus By Laure Kuhfuss; Raphaële Préget; Sophie Thoyer; Nick Hanley
  22. Participation of smallholders in carbon-certified small-scale agroforestry: A lesson from the rural Mount Kenyan region By Emmanuel Benjamin; Matthias Blum
  23. Direct and indirect effects of Malawi?s public works program on food security By Beegle,Kathleen G.; Galasso,Emanuela; Goldberg,Jessica Ann
  24. Evaluation Design for the Transition to High-Value Agriculture Project in Moldova By Evan Borkum; Jane Fortson; Candace Miller
  25. What?s left for the WTO ? By Bown,Chad P.
  26. Famines in late Medieval and Early Modern Italy: A test for an advanced economy By Guido Alfani
  27. ASIAN SPOT PRICES FOR LNG OTHER ENERGY COMMODITIES By Abdullahi Alim; Peter R. Hartley; Yihui Lan
  28. Are Competitors Forward Looking in Strategic Interactions? Evidence from the Field By Lackner, Mario; Stracke, Rudi; Sunde, Uwe; Winter-Ebmer, Rudolf
  29. Identifying, estimating and correcting the biases in WTO rules on public stocks. A proposal for the post-Bali food security agenda By Galtier, F.
  30. Unit Roots, Flexible Trends and the Prebisch-Singer Hypothesis By Winkelried, Diego

  1. By: Delzeit, Ruth; Sipangule, Kacana; Thiele, Rainer
    Abstract: The year 2015 is important for sustainable development: the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) have expired and have been replaced by the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) in September, and from November 30th to December 11th, the 21st Session of the Conference of the Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (COP21/CMP11) will be held. The COP21/CMP11 aims to reach a universal, legally binding agreement to combat climate change and boost the transition towards resilient, low-carbon societies and economies. Reducing greenhouse gas emissions to limit global warming (mitigation) and helping societies adapt to existing climate change are seen as measures the agreement should equally focus on. The group that is likely to suffer most from climate change is poor rural households in developing countries who mainly rely on small-scale agriculture for their livelihood. In large parts of Sub-Saharan Africa and South Asia, the two regions with the highest incidence of undernutrition, the MDG of cutting hunger by half has not been met (United Nations 2014). Reaching the still more ambitious SDG 2 (end hunger until 2030, achieve food security and improved nutrition, and promote sustainable agriculture) appears to be a daunting task even in the absence of climate change. By lowering agricultural yields in some regions, climate change adds to the challenge. This policy brief therefore argues for a particular focus on agricultural production and food security in the current COP21 to help the largest possible number of people satisfy the most basic need of being well nourished.
    Date: 2015
  2. By: Mehta, Niti
    Abstract: The paper has examined the changes in inter-sectoral relations as driven by the sectoral shares and sectoral growth patterns, and has traced the nature of linkages between agriculture and the rest of the economy in the changing context. The relation between use of technological inputs in agriculture and employment encompasses the socio-economic and technical links between inputs and outputs. In this context, the paper has examined by means of a case study, the role of bio-chemical technology in raising crop productivity and net incomes of farmers. Increasing output and profitability in the agriculture sector are the necessary precursors for strengthening the linkages between agriculture and the rest of the economy. The adoption of herbicide-tolerant (HT) technology has been found to reduce the cost of production through lower expenditure on herbicides, labour, machinery and fuel, despite charging of technology fees on the seeds. In this context, the paper has assessed the potential impact on agricultural productivity and net profits through the introduction of technology, viz., herbicide-tolerant (HT) cotton in sample farms across Gujarat. The findings based on secondary analysis and evidence based on a case study have categorically indicated the need for greater farm mechanization coupled with introduction of technologies that are labour saving if agricultural productivity has to be maintained and stepped up. Such an outcome would no doubt enhance agriculture-industry linkages in the production process and would also have favourable income effects giving a further boost to agriculture and industry.
    Keywords: Herbicide-tolerant cotton, Agricultural labour-use, Agriculture-industry linkages, Gujarat
    JEL: J22 J23 J31 Q12 Q16 R1
    Date: 2015–10
  3. By: Chuku, Chuku
    Abstract: In this study, we argue that conventional methods of measuring agricultural productivity which only uses information about marketed inputs and outputs does not give a true representation of how sustainable the activities of the sector are. Motivated by the Solow-type growth accounting framework, we use the Tornqvist index formula to construct input, output and TFP indices for Nigerian agriculture between 1980 and 2010. We account for environmental externalities by incorporating off-farm damage costs of soil erosion based on different assumptions about possible scenarios of the extent and trajectory of damage costs. The results show that when externalities are not accounted for, productivity in the Nigerian agricultural sector is overestimated. This conclusion is robust to the different assumptions about damage cost scenarios made. The implication is that reducing off-farm erosion damages through improved soil conservation practices will significantly improve productivity and sustainability in the Nigerian agriculture sector.
    Keywords: Tornqvist TFP, environmental externalities, soil erosion, USLE
    JEL: D24 O13 Q16
    Date: 2015
  4. By: Odozi, John C.
    Abstract: The negative effect of Climate Change (CC) on agriculture across Africa has been well established and hence the global policy interest. In Nigeria, crop farming is climate dependent and farmholders often employ measures that are sub-optimal against adverse conditions of climate. This raises the vulnerability of farming to CC uncertainty. For a long time, knowledge of CC perception by farmholders dominated the existing literature. The study employed econometric techniques to generate information on the net economic damages and benefits of climate change. Climate change impact was found to be huge for the whole country with impact variation across agricultural zones. It concludes that the ability of smallholder farms to sustain continual output of crops for local and regional markets depend critically on effective adaptation measures that seek to maintain optimal conditions of climate for agricultural production and government effective response.
    Keywords: Climate change; Ricardian valuation; sustainable adaptation practices; agricultural resources; farm productivity and governance
    JEL: Q15 Q51 Q54 Q57
    Date: 2015–02–15
  5. By: Sudha Narayanan
    Abstract: This article addresses the imperative of food security in India in the context of persistent prevalence of malnutrition despite several years of rapid growth. In particular, the article posits that the recent promulgation of the National Food Security Act in September 2014 to meet this challenge also offers an opportunity to reconfigure its food distribution system and agricultural trade policy. These two issues pose the greatest and most immediate challenges for India. The more enduring challenge for India would be to sustain food production to ensure not only adequate quantities, but also to support dietary quality and diversity.
    Keywords: India;food security;WTO;Public Distribution System;procurement
    Date: 2015–01–12
  6. By: Percy E. SAJISE (Bioversity International Southeast Asia Regional Center for Graduate Study and Research in Agriculture (SEARCA))
    Abstract: The importance of biodiversity conservation and its sustainable use for the realisation of the ASEAN vision of promoting sustainable development and a green economy is well recognised. However, the current state of biodiversity in general, and agro-biodiversity in particular, in the region is a matter of serious concern. There has been significant progress in the expansion of Protected Areas in the region, as well as the setting up of both in situ and ex situ biodiversity conservation programmes. Nonetheless, urgent steps still need to be taken at the community, national and regional levels to ensure biodiversity conservation and its sustainable use. This paper provides an analysis of the opportunities and constraints of biodiversity conservation in natural and agricultural ecosystems. This analysis has been used to identify important strategies and initiatives to promote community empowerment, as well as national strengthening and regional collaboration to enhance biodiversity conservation and its sustainable use for the realisation of the ASEAN vision.
    Keywords: biodiversity, agro-biodiversity, resilience, sustainability, International Treaty on Plant Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture, Convention on Biological Diversity
    Date: 2015–12
  7. By: Garg, Amit; Mishra, Vimal; Dholakia, Hem H.
    Abstract: Climate change is projected to have severe adverse impacts on India’s population, natural eco-systems, and socio-economic parameters. India’s vulnerability to climate change impacts is profound since around 650 million Indians are dependent on rain-fed agriculture for their livelihoods; around 250 million Indians live along a 7500 km of coastline that is at high risk due to sea level rise and extreme weather events; many of the 10,000-odd Indian glaciers are receding at a rapid rate; and deforestation is happening. India is concerned about climate change impacts. India occupies 2.4% of the global land area, supports 17% of the global population and contributes less than 4% of global greenhouse gas emissions. Sustainable development is at the core of Indian planning process and India has been making huge efforts for enhancing the quality of life of her people including sustained poverty alleviation efforts. The number of people below poverty line has declined from 469 million to about 388 million during 2005 to 2010. Even then roughly threefourths of Indian population lives below a daily income of US$ 2 (PPP). This also highlights the extent of number of people who are vulnerable to adverse impacts of a changing climate. India has submitted the Intended Nationally Determined Contributions to UNFCCC on October 1, 2015 highlighting a strong GHG mitigation plan until 2030 and also providing a glimpse into national vulnerability to adverse impacts of climate change across regions and sectors. According to IPCC AR5, adaptation and mitigation are complementary strategies for reducing and managing the risks of climate change. The below 2oC target also unequivocally includes reducing the combined and cumulative risks of mitigation and adaptation actions. The Lima COP-20 (2014) agreed on elevating adaptation onto the same level as the curbing and cutting of greenhouse gas emissions. This report analyzes the climate change that is already occurring in India, projected future climate change, the proactive measures Government of India is taking to adapt to the adverse impacts of climate change, and the Adaptation Gap that is ever increasing. India has experienced substantial changes in mean and extreme climate during the period of 1951-2013. For instance, mean annual air temperature has increased in many regions of the country. Other than the mean annual air temperature, prominent increase was observed in the number of hot days, night-time temperature, and growing degree days during the period of 1951-2013. Figure 1 indicates the regions that are experiencing temperatures equivalent to various RCPs currently. Based on our analysis, around 36 districts (5.5% of land area or ~36 million people) are observing temperatures equivalent to Representative Concentration Pathway 8.5(warming of 4°C+)., 65 districts (11% of land area or ~65 million people) RCP6 (warming of 3°C-4°C), 346 districts (59% of land area or ~704 million people) RCP4.5(warming of 2°C -3°C) and the remaining 190 (24.5% of land area or ~405 million people) districts RCP2.6 (warming of 2°C). The RCP are internationally accepted scenarios to project climate change. Similary for precipation, these numbers are 63% area for RCP 8.5, 2.6% area for RCP 6, 24% area for RCP 4.5 and 11% area for RCP 2.6. 35 districts are facing the highest risk facing due to enhanced temperature now (following profiles similar to RCP 8.5). These are Aizawl, Baran, Bhilwara, Bundi, Cachar, Champhai, Chandel, Chittaurgarh, Churachandpur, Darrang, Dhalai, East Garo Hills, East Kameng, Guna, Hailakandi, Jaipur, Jhalawar, Karimganj, Kolasib, Kota, Lalitpur, xii CLIMATE CHANGE AND INDIA: ADAPTATION GAP (2015) Lawngtlai, Lunglei, Mamit, North Tripura, Papum Pare, Sagar, Saiha, Sawai Madhopur, Serchhip, Sheopur, Shivpuri, Sivasagar, South Tripura and West Tripura. There are 408 districts for similar profile for precipitation and this are spread across various states of India. 22 districts which are following RCP 8.5 profile for both temperature and precipitation together are Aizawl, Baran, Bhilwara, Bundi, Cachar, Champhai, Chandel, Chittaurgarh, Churachandpur, Dhalai, East Garo Hills, Hailakandi, Jhalawar, Karimganj, Kolasib, Kota, Lunglei, Mamit, North Tripura, Serchhip, South Tripura and West Tripura
  8. By: Kenneth W Clements (Business School, University of Western Australia); Jiawei Si (Business School, University of Western Australia)
    Abstract: Increasing income brings about a decline in the relative importance of food consumption, a wider spread of spending patterns and a demand for higher-quality goods. Using an index-number approach, this paper analyses these three closely related tendencies. Stripping out the impact of prices from the dispersion of food expenditures gives a volume-based measure of diet diversity that is relevant for nutrition. Using unpublished ICP data for 28 items of food in more than 100 countries, we find that the income elasticity of diet diversity ranges from 0.2 (for the poorest) to 0.5 (for the richest countries). The quality of the food consumption basket, measured by an income elasticity-consumption covariance, increases with income, but the elasticity is small. Approximately three-quarters of spending on higher quality food is on account of larger volumes, with the remainder going into prices. As the prices of luxuries relative to necessities tend to be higher in richer countries, the structure of prices has a progressive impact on the global distribution of real incomes.
    Date: 2015
  9. By: Laure Kuhfuss (LAMETA - Laboratoire Montpelliérain d'Économie Théorique et Appliquée - UM1 - Université Montpellier 1 - Institut national de la recherche agronomique (INRA) - Centre international de hautes études agronomiques méditerranéennes [CIHEAM] - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique, UM1 - Université Montpellier 1); Julie Subervie (LAMETA - Laboratoire Montpelliérain d'Économie Théorique et Appliquée - UM1 - Université Montpellier 1 - Institut national de la recherche agronomique (INRA) - Centre international de hautes études agronomiques méditerranéennes [CIHEAM] - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique)
    Abstract: Agri-environmental schemes (AES) are a central component of the environmental policy of the European Union. Despite widespread interest and investment in AESs, few of these pro- grams have been carefully evaluated and doubts are often expressed about the effectiveness of voluntary programs. The purpose of this article is to estimate the additional effects of AESs targeting nonpoint source pollution from pesticides, focusing on one emblematic case study: herbicide use in vineyards. We use original data collected from winegrowers participating in AESs in the south of France, and we use exogenous variation in the timing of the implemen- tation of the AESs as a natural experiment. We show that the quantity of herbicides used by participants in the programin 2012 was around 30%belowwhat theywould have usedwithout the program, while the impact was significantly higher in 2011 - around 50% - presumably be- cause of higher weed pressure. Although significant, these impacts remain smaller than what had been expected by policymakers. Focusing on the “zero herbicide between the vine rows” option, which is both the most often chosen as well as the least stringent among the mea- sures,we moreover showthe presence of windfall effects. Simple extrapolation of these results suggests that this level of effectiveness may not be sufficient to ensurewater quality in thewa- tersheds targeted by the AES.
    Keywords: agri-environmental scheme,herbicides,natural experiment,nonpoint source pollution,pesticides,water quality
    Date: 2015
  10. By: Charles Gottlieb (University of Cambridge); Jan Grobovsek (University of Edinburgh)
    Abstract: This paper quantifies the aggregate impact of communal land tenure arrangements such as those that predominate in Sub-Saharan Africa. For this we use a general equilibrium selection model featuring agents that are heterogeneous in agricultural and non-agricultural skills. A fraction of aggregate land is communal and there are policy rules governing its expropriation and redistribution. These create operational frictions by subjecting rented-out communal land to the risk of expropriation. They also create occupational frictions as agricultural employment lowers the risk of expropriation as well as raises the prospect of communal land accumulation. The quantification of the model is based on policies deduced from Ethiopia. It reveals that communal land decreases productivity in agriculture relative to non-agriculture roughly by 20% in nominal and 10% in real terms. Employment and GDP, however, are not substantially affected. That serves as a reminder that ostensibly highly distortionary policies need not have substantial bite when individuals strategically adjust to them.
    Date: 2015
  11. By: Rosete, Alfredo (Department of Economics, University of Massachusetts, Amherst)
    Abstract: Accompanying a sharp rise in food prices between 2007 and 2008 were reports of land deals in the global South. The sudden rise in land acquisitions in developing countries has drawn the attention of scholars and think tanks. In particular, a set of recent papers by Deininger (2011), Deininger (2013), and Arezki et al. (2013) sought to understand the empirical determinants of the land rush. They find that investors tend to target countries that have weak land-governance institutions, understood as the degree to which local land rights are upheld. This is a puzzle, given the economic literature on investment location. By locating in a country with weak land-governance, investors may be foregoing other advantages that generate more revenue. What does such a result say about both the nature of the investment projects, and the productive characteristics of the target countries? In this paper, I attempt to answer these questions using a game-theoretic model where investors can use expropriation as a credible threat, consistent with case studies and empirical data from actual land deals. I show that the credible threat of expropriation lowers the investor’s cost of locating to a country by reducing the necessary remuneration to smallholders for access to land, resulting in adverse incorporation. Further, I show that investors will locate in countries with weak land governance whenever they anticipate similar levels of revenue among the set of countries they target, or, whenever they can guarantee a similar level of investor protections.
    Keywords: Land acquisitions, agribusiness, governance, contest games, investment location.
    JEL: F21 O13 Q15 Q34 C79
    Date: 2015
  12. By: Poulomi Ganguli; Devashish Kumar; Auroop R. Ganguly
    Abstract: Thermoelectric power production at risk, owing to current and projected water scarcity and rising stream temperatures, is assessed for the contiguous United States at decadal scales. Regional water scarcity is driven by climate variability and change, as well as by multi-sector water demand. While a planning horizon of zero to about thirty years is occasionally prescribed by stakeholders, the challenges to risk assessment at these scales include the difficulty in delineating decadal climate trends from intrinsic natural or multiple model variability. Current generation global climate or earth system models are not credible at the spatial resolutions of power plants, especially for surface water quantity and stream temperatures, which further exacerbates the assessment challenge. Population changes, which are difficult to project, cannot serve as adequate proxies for changes in the water demand across sectors. The hypothesis that robust assessments of power production at risk are possible, despite the uncertainties, has been examined as a proof of concept. An approach is presented for delineating water scarcity and temperature from climate models, observations and population storylines, as well as for assessing power production at risk by examining geospatial correlations of power plant locations within regions where the usable water supply for energy production happens to be scarcer and warmer. Our analyses showed that in the near term, more than 200 counties are likely to be exposed to water scarcity in the next three decades. Further, we noticed that stream gauges in more than five counties in the 2030s and ten counties in the 2040s showed a significant increase in water temperature, which exceeded the power plant effluent temperature threshold set by the EPA. Power plants in South Carolina, Louisiana, and Texas are likely to be vulnerable owing to climate-driven water stresses.
    Date: 2015–11
  13. By: Philipp Adämmer; Martin T. Bohl
    Abstract: The literature on price discovery in agricultural markets is predominantly devoted to North America. This paper extends the analysis to Europe to investigate the infl uence of futures markets on the pricing process during periods of price turmoil and rising trading activity. By quantifying the contribution of the futures market to price discovery over time, we show that its impact was high during the first period of price spikes (2007 to 2009) but lower during the second one (2010 to 2013). These results are noteworthy as trading volume in futures markets was low during the first period but high during the latter. More liquidity did thus not lead to a higher infl uence on spot prices. We argue that futures markets especially mattered for price discovery during the period of unanticipated price shocks, namely between 2007 and 2009.
    Keywords: Price Discovery, European Agricultural Markets, Common Factor Weights, Time-Varying VECM
    JEL: G10 G12 G13 Q10
    Date: 2015–11
  14. By: Barbara Broadway; Duncan McVicar
    Abstract: This paper examines the impact of a major Australian disability reform – the 2006 Welfare to Work reform – on welfare receipt. It uses a combination of difference-in-differences and propensity score matching to identify the treatment effect. The reform reduced the generosity and increased the conditionality of welfare payments by shifting partially disabled disability benefit claimants from disability benefits to unemployment benefits. This led to increases among partially disabled welfare recipients in the hazards for exiting welfare and for switching (back) from unemployment to disability benefits. It also led to an increase in the hazard for returning to welfare for those having previously exited welfare. Overall the reform had no impact on the probability of being on welfare 12 months or 24 months later. Disability reforms need to do more than simply reduce the generosity and tighten the conditionality of payments if they are to impact on welfare dependence among people with disability.
    Keywords: Welfare reform, Disability, Hazard rate, Propensity score matching, Difference-in-differences
    JEL: I38 J14
    Date: 2015–05
  15. By: Maria Cheung; Maria Perrotta Berlin
    Abstract: This study is an evaluation of the impact of a food for education program implemented in primary schools (grades 1–6) in six Cambodian provinces between 1999 and 2003. We find that school enrolment increased to varying degrees in relation to different designs of the intervention. We also investigate the effect of the program in terms of completed education and probability of having ever been in school, following up the affected cohorts in a 2009 survey. With an estimated cost of US$85 per additional child in school per year, the program can be considered very cost-effective within a comparable class of interventions.
    Keywords: Food for Education;program evaluation;Cambodia;enrolment;cost-effectiveness
    Date: 2015–02–12
  16. By: Chih Ming Tan (Department of Economics, University of North Dakota, USA; The Rimini Centre for Economic Analysis, Italy); Zhibo Tan (School of Economics, Fudan University, China); Xiaobo Zhang (China Center for Economic Research, Peking University, China; International Food Policy Research Institute, USA)
    Abstract: The effect of early exposure to malnutrition on the next generation’s cognitive abilities has rarely been studied in human beings in large part due to lack of data. A natural experiment, the Great Chinese Famine, and a novel dataset are employed to study this effect. The paper finds that the cognitive abilities of children born to rural famine fathers were affected and that the impact is more pronounced in girls than in boys, whereas children born to female survivors are not affected. The uncovered gender-specific effect is almost entirely attributable to son preference exhibited in families with male famine survivors.
    Date: 2014–05
  17. By: Lucía Pittaluga Fonseca (Universidad de la República (Uruguay). Facultad de Ciencias Económicas y de Administración. Instituto de Economía); Cristina Zurbriggen (Universidad de la República (Uruguay). Facultad de Ciencias Sociales. Instituto de Ciencia Política)
    Abstract: This paper examines two case studies from Uruguay which involve international trade negotiations to set high quality meat (beef and sheep) standards in order to access high income markets. Both cases include the intervention of the various actors of the international governance regime to food safety (multilateral actors, like the Codex, the OIE or the WTO, as well as bilateral actors, like the Europe Union or the U.S.). They also involve the Uruguayan government, its animal health agencies and the local private sector from the whole meat value chain. These two case studies illustrate quite accurately how a less developed country can increase its national policy space in the context of the emerging experimentalist transnational governance regime in food safety. They contribute to show that without the creation of local capabilities, such as the meat traceability policy in Uruguay, a voice-instead-of-silence strategy from less developed countries in order to impact on the international regulation framework of food safety is hardly possible.
    Keywords: international trade negotiations, innovation, traceability, experimentalist governance, food safety
    JEL: F53
    Date: 2015–10
  18. By: Anders Skonhoft (Department of Economics, Norwegian University of Science and Technology)
    Abstract: During the last few decades, the number of large carnivores (wolf, bear, lynx and wolverines) has increased significantly in Scandinavia. As a result of more predation of livestock, conflicts with livestock farmers have deepened. We model this conflict using sheep farming as an example, and in instances in which farmers are given compensation for the predation loss. The compensation scheme is composed of a fixed per animal loss value (ex-post), but also a compensation just for the presence of the carnivores (ex-ante). Ex-post compensation payment is practiced in many countries where farmers are affected by killed and injured livestock, but also damages to crops. Ex-ante payment implies payment for environmental services (PES) and is also widely practiced. In the first part of the paper, the stocking decision of a group of farmers is analyzed. In a next step, the Directorate for Natural Resource Management (DNRM), managing the carnivores and compensation scheme, is introduced. The strategic interaction between the sheep farmers and DNRM is modelled as a Stackelberg game with DNRM as the leader. We find that it is not beneficial for DNRM to use ex-post, but only ex-ante compensation. The solution to the game is compared to the social planner solution, and numerical illustrations indicate that the efficiency loss of the ex-ante compensation scheme to be small.
    Keywords: Carnivore conservation, sheep farming, compensation, Stackelberg game
    JEL: Q20 Q18
    Date: 2015–12–03
  19. By: Alan Matthews (Department of Economics, Trinity College Dublin);
    Abstract: This paper examines the possible impact of the EU’s common agricultural policy (CAP) and its common fisheries policy (CFP) (particularly its external dimension) on the migration of third country nationals to the EU. First, the expected impacts of both policies are discussed taking into account that both policies have undergone considerable changes in recent years. Data on irregular migration (as an imperfect proxy for economic migration driven mainly by ‘push’ factors) are used to identify those countries which are the principal sources of irregular migrants to the EU. The likely contribution of the CAP and CFP to these migration flows is discussed. For both policies, detailed case-study work in individual countries would be necessary to discover if either policy does have discernible effects and, if so, the nature of those effects.
    Keywords: EU common agricultural policy, EU common fisheries policy, migration
    JEL: F22 Q18 Q22
    Date: 2015–12
  20. By: Paul J. Burke; Hua Liao
    Abstract: China's dependence on coal is a major contributor to local and global environmental problems. In this paper we estimate the price elasticity of demand for coal in China using a panel of province-level data for 1998-2012. We find that provincial coal demand has become increasingly price elastic. As of 2012 we estimate that this elasticity was in the range -0.3 to -0.7 in point estimate terms when responses over two years are considered. The results imply that China's coal market is becoming more suited to price-based approaches to reducing emissions. The elimination of coal consumption subsidies could reduce national coal use and related emissions by around 2%.
    Keywords: coal, price elasticity, demand, China, provincial
    JEL: Q58 Q40
    Date: 2015–10–01
  21. By: Laure Kuhfuss (LAMETA - Laboratoire Montpelliérain d'Économie Théorique et Appliquée - UM1 - Université Montpellier 1 - Institut national de la recherche agronomique (INRA) - Centre international de hautes études agronomiques méditerranéennes [CIHEAM] - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique, UM1 - Université Montpellier 1); Raphaële Préget (LAMETA - Laboratoire Montpelliérain d'Économie Théorique et Appliquée - UM1 - Université Montpellier 1 - Institut national de la recherche agronomique (INRA) - Centre international de hautes études agronomiques méditerranéennes [CIHEAM] - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique); Sophie Thoyer (LAMETA - Laboratoire Montpelliérain d'Économie Théorique et Appliquée - UM1 - Université Montpellier 1 - Institut national de la recherche agronomique (INRA) - Centre international de hautes études agronomiques méditerranéennes [CIHEAM] - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique, Montpellier SupAgro - Centre International d'Etudes Supérieures Agronomiques); Nick Hanley (University of St Andrews)
    Abstract: Using a choice experiment, this paper shows that the introduction of a conditional collective bonus in an agri-environmental scheme (AES) can improve farmers’ participation and increase land enrolment for lower overall budgetary costs. This monetary bonus is paid per hectare of enrolled land in addition to the usual agri-environmental payment if a given threshold is reached in terms of farmers’ participation in the region or catchment of interest. Using a choice experiment, we estimate the preferences of wine growers in the South of France for such a bonus. We show that it contributes to increased expectations of farmers on others’ participation, therefore changing the pro-environmental social norm and initiating group dynamics towards the adoption of less pesticide- intensive farming practices over time.
    Keywords: behaviour,choice experiment,collective incentive,payment for environmental services,social norm,agri-environmental schemes
    Date: 2015
  22. By: Emmanuel Benjamin; Matthias Blum
    Abstract: This study examines factors that determine the participation of smallholder farmers in certified agroforestry programs involving payments for ecosystem services (PES) in the mount Kenyan region, Kenya. A random utility model and logit regression was used to test a set of nonmonetary and monetary factors that influence participation in the international small group tree planting programme (TIST). This study employs survey data compiled in 2013 on 210 randomly selected smallholders; equally split between TIST and non-TIST members. The findings suggest that the spread of information via formal and informal networks as well as credit constraints are three important drivers of participating in the TIST program. Conversely, participation in TIST is not influenced by farm size, proximity to market, and level of education. Given the importance of smallholder poverty alleviation and credit market accessibility in the presence of climate change, our findings suggest that sustainable development policies should focus on strengthening the social capital and informal networks.
    Keywords: Agroforestry program, Network, Spillover, Payment for ecosystem services (PES), Adoption, Information, Sub-Saharan Africa
    JEL: D8 O1 O3 Q1 Q2
    Date: 2015–05
  23. By: Beegle,Kathleen G.; Galasso,Emanuela; Goldberg,Jessica Ann
    Abstract: Labor-intensive public works programs are important social protection tools in low-income settings, intended to supplement income of poor households and improve public infrastructure. In this evaluation of the Malawi Social Action Fund, an at-scale, government-operated program, across- and within-village randomization is used to estimate effects on food security and use of fertilizer. There is no evidence that the program improves food security, and some negative spillovers to untreated households. These disappointing results hold even under modifications to the design of the program to offer work during the lean rather than harvest season or increase the frequency of payments.
    Keywords: Food Security,Small Area Estimation Poverty Mapping,Regional Economic Development,Rural Poverty Reduction,Food&Beverage Industry
    Date: 2015–12–02
  24. By: Evan Borkum; Jane Fortson; Candace Miller
    Abstract: This report describes plans for the evaluation of the Transition to High-Value Agriculture Project in Moldova.
    Keywords: agriculture, irrigation infrastructure, finance
    JEL: F Z
    Date: 2015–10–21
  25. By: Bown,Chad P.
    Abstract: Suppose that when addressing the question of ?what?s left for the WTO?,? tariff negotiators relied not on the agenda established in 2001 but instead on the terms-of-trade theory of trade agreements to identify negotiating priorities. This paper uses the lens of the terms-of-trade theory to investigate three areas in which it is frequently alleged that currently applied tariffs remain ?too high?; the implication being that the WTO?s job performance to date is incomplete. This includes applied tariffs for countries that are not members of the WTO, applied MFN tariffs for WTO members that are unbound, and applied MFN tariffs for WTO members set in the presence of large amounts of tariff binding overhang. These are almost exclusively the domain of developing countries? own trade policies and they are collectively important; 3.5 billion people currently live in countries in which the WTO has had minimal effect for one of these three reasons. This paper builds upon recent developments in the empirical literature to present evidence?some direct, some indirect?that sheds light on each area. It then identifies specific needs for additional research to clarify policy implications for the future role of the WTO in the ever-changing international trading system.
    Keywords: Free Trade,Trade and Services,Economic Theory&Research,World Trade Organization,Trade Law
    Date: 2015–12–02
  26. By: Guido Alfani
    Abstract: This paper analyzes how advanced Medieval and Early Modern Italian economies attempted to cope with famines. First, it provides an overview of the occurrence of famines and food shortages in Italy from the fifteenth to the seventeenth century, underlining the connections with overall climatic and demographic trends. Second, it focuses on the 1590s famine (the worst to affect Italy in the period), providing a general discussion and interpretation of its causes and characteristics, and describing and evaluating the strategies for coping with the crisis that developed within the Republic of Genoa and the Duchy of Ferrara. The article argues that when such a large-scale food crisis as that of the 1590s occurred, public action played a key role in providing relief.
    Keywords: Famine; mortality crises; subsistence crises; Italy; early modern period; 1590s; markets integration; grain trade; agrarian innovation.
    Date: 2015–11
  27. By: Abdullahi Alim (Business School, University of Western Australia); Peter R. Hartley (Business School, University of Western Australia); Yihui Lan (Business School, University of Western Australia)
    Abstract: We investigate the relationship between the Japan-Korea Marker (JKM) price of LNG, the price of Brent oil and spot prices of fuel oil and thermal coal in Asia. We focus especially on the JKM price. This is of increasing interest as a result of the increasing proportion of spot and short-term trading of LNG together with proposals to develop an LNG pricing hub in Asia with associated derivatives markets. In addition, since imminent LNG exports from the US Gulf Coast may substantially disrupt historical pricing relationships between natural gas prices in different locations and the relationships between those prices and the price of oil, it is of interest to characterize the behaviour of LNG prices in Asia before such disruptions occur. Finally, our analysis has implications for the suitability of the JKM price as an alternative to oil or other spot natural gas prices for indexing long-term LNG contracts.
    Date: 2015
  28. By: Lackner, Mario (Department of Economics, University of Linz (JKU)); Stracke, Rudi (Department of Economics, University of Munich (LMU)); Sunde, Uwe (Department of Economics, University of Munich (LMU)); Winter-Ebmer, Rudolf (Department of Economics, University of Linz (JKU) and Institute for Advanced Studies, Vienna)
    Abstract: This paper investigates empirically whether decision makers are forward looking in dynamic strategic interactions. In particular, we test whether decision makers in multi-stage tournaments take heterogeneity induced changes of continuation values and the ability of their immediate opponent into account when choosing effort. Using data from professional and semi-professional basketball tournaments, we find that effort is negatively affected by the ability of the current opponent, consistent with the theoretical prediction and previous evidence. More importantly, the results indicate that the expected relative strength in future interactions does affect behavior in earlier stages, which provides support for the 'standard' view that decision makers are forward looking in dynamic strategic interactions.
    Keywords: Promotion tournament, multi-stage contest, elimination, forward-looking behavior, heterogeneity
    JEL: D84 D90 M51 J33
    Date: 2015–11
  29. By: Galtier, F.
    Abstract: In this paper, we analyze the WTO rules that specify how to estimate the subsidy provided to farmers by public stocks. We identify three biases in these rules: - Bias B1, resulting from using a fixed past unit value of import or export as external reference price, instead of the current price cost of imports or exports. - Bias B2, resulting from using the procurement price of the public stock instead of the price prevailing on the domestic market to estimate the price support received by the farmers who sell their production on the domestic market. - Bias B3, resulting from using the national production instead of the marketed share of national production, by this way ignoring farmer self-consumption. The effect of these three biases on the estimated subsidy varies with the country but, on average, WTO rules lead to overestimate the subsidy by a factor 2 to more than 300, depending on the modalities of public stock interventions and other parameters. This means that in the most favorable scenarios, the estimated subsidy is (on average) twice the real subsidy. The effect of these biases on country compliance proves to be huge: many countries have an estimated subsidy above their maximum allowed level (even with very light public stock interventions), just because the subsidy provided by public stocks is overestimated by WTO rules. This result challenges the widespread idea that almost all countries comply with WTO rules on public stocks. We also test the effect of correcting only some of the biases. It appears that doing this would not allow eliminating the biases in country compliance. An implication of this is that expressing the fixed external reference price (FERP) in US dollar, correcting it with the country inflation rate or replacing it by the average unit value of imports or exports over the last five years (as proposed by several experts and WTO Members) would not be enough to remove the bias on country compliance. There is therefore a need to correct all the three biases, what can be done in a rather simple way, as is shown at the end of the paper. ....French Abstract : Dans cet article, nous analysons les règles de l’OMC qui définissent comment estimer la subvention procurée par les stocks publics aux producteurs agricoles. Nous identifions trois biais dans ces règles : - le biais B1, qui résulte du fait d’utiliser comme prix extérieur de référence la valeur unitaire des importations ou des exportations au cours d’une période fixe passée, au lieu d’utiliser le coût de revient actuel des importations ou des exportations. - le biais B2, qui résulte du fait d’utiliser le prix d’achat du stock public (au lieu du prix en vigueur sur le marché domestique) pour estimer la subvention reçue par les agriculteurs qui vendent leur production sur le marché domestique. - le biais B3, qui résulte du fait d’utiliser la production nationale au lieu de la part commercialisée de cette production (ignorant par la même l’autoconsommation des producteurs). L’effet de ces trois biais sur la subvention estimée diffère selon les pays mais, en moyenne, les règles de l’OMC conduisent à surestimer la subvention d’un facteur 2 à plus de 300, selon les modalités d’intervention des stocks publics et d’autres paramètres. Cela signifie que, dans les scénarios les plus favorables, la subvention estimée représente le double de la subvention réelle. L’effet de ces biais sur la conformité des pays avec leurs engagements à l’OMC se révèle être très important: beaucoup de pays ont une subvention estimée au-dessus du plafond autorisé (même avec des interventions de faible ampleur), simplement parce que la subvention est surestimée par les règles de l’OMC. Ceci remet en cause l’idée très répandue selon laquelle presque tous les pays seraient en règles vis-à-vis de leurs engagements sur les stocks publics et le soutien interne. Nous avons également testé les effets d’une correction partielle des biais B1, B2 et B3. Il s’avère que cette correction partielle ne permet pas d’éliminer le biais sur la conformité des pays avec leurs engagements à l’OMC. Ceci implique notamment qu’exprimer le prix fixe extérieur de référence (FERP) en dollar US, que le corriger par le taux d’inflation du pays ou que le remplacer par la moyenne de la valeur unitaire des importations ou des exportations au cours des cinq années précédentes (comme proposé par différents experts et pays Membres) ne serait pas suffisant pour corriger le bais sur la conformité des pays avec leurs engagements. Il est donc nécessaire de corriger les trois biais, ce qui peut être fait d’une manière assez simple, comme nous le montrons à la fin de l’article.
    JEL: Q18 Q11 F1
    Date: 2015
  30. By: Winkelried, Diego (Universidad del Pacífico)
    Abstract: This paper studies the dynamic properties of relative commodity prices, especially the Presbisch-Singer hypothesis on the secular decline in these series, using a new family of unit root tests that is based on the Fourier approximation to the underlying trend in the data. The approximation controls for low-frequency variations such as structural breaks, or such as the long swings induced by hypothesized super cycles in the data. Relative to the extant literature, we find considerably more evidence in favor of trend stationarity in relative commodity prices, and relatively limited support for the Prebisch-Singer hypothesis.
    Keywords: Primary commodity prices, unit roots, long swings, super cycles.
    JEL: C22 O13
    Date: 2015–11

General information on the NEP project can be found at For comments please write to the director of NEP, Marco Novarese at <>. Put “NEP” in the subject, otherwise your mail may be rejected.
NEP’s infrastructure is sponsored by the School of Economics and Finance of Massey University in New Zealand.