New Economics Papers
on Central and South America
Issue of 2011‒06‒11
four papers chosen by

  1. Una evaluación del Plan de Consolidación Integral de la Macarena (PCIM) By Daniel Mejía; María José Uribe; Ana María Ibáñez
  2. Anti-Poverty Programs and Presidential Election Outcomes: Familias en Acción in Colombia By Oskar Nupia
  3. Rising food prices and household welfare: Evidence from Brazil in 2008 By Francisco H. G. Ferreira; Anna Fruttero; Phillippe Leite; Leonardo Lucchetti
  4. The determinants of the composition of public debt in developing and emerging market countries By Forslund, Kristine; Lima, Lycia; Panizza, Ugo

  1. By: Daniel Mejía; María José Uribe; Ana María Ibáñez
    Abstract: Este artículo presenta una descripción de la nueva estrategia de la lucha contra las drogas implementada en Colombia desde el año 2007. El Salto Estratégico, como ha llamado el gobierno colombiano a este programa, o la Iniciativa de Desarrollo Estratégico, como lo llama USAID (la agencia del gobierno de Estados Unidos para la ayuda a los países en desarrollo) es un paso hacia adelante en el diseño de políticas anti-droga más sostenibles y efectivas en el mediano plazo. Actualmente, se está implementando un plan piloto en la Sierra de la Macarena, en el departamento del Meta (suroriente de Bogotá), donde los cultivos de coca y las actividades ilícitas eran la norma hace unos pocos años. El Estado colombiano, con financiación parcial de los gobiernos de Estados Unidos y países de Europa, consolida su presencia en la zona con las diferentes instancias y programas del aparato estatal para recuperar el control territorial y combatir la producción de drogas ilícitas. Pero más importante aun es que esta nueva aproximación de las políticas antidroga se ha fundamentado en un plan de desarrollo económico regional, para evitar que los campesinos se vinculen con actividades ilícitas asociadas a los primeros eslabones de la producción y tráfico de cocaína. El adecuado funcionamiento de esta estrategia puede ser un punto de referencia para otros países que enfrentan problemas de producción de drogas ilícitas y de conflicto asociado a estas actividades.
    Date: 2011–03–14
  2. By: Oskar Nupia
    Abstract: Using a comprehensive data set for Colombian municipalities between 2002 and 2010, in this paper we study the effects of large anti-poverty programs on presidential election outcomes. In particular, we test for two of the main assumptions on voters’ behavior adopted by the political economics literature. First, we examine whether the incumbent governing coalition has been politically rewarded due to the expansion exhibited by the program during the last decade. Second, we test whether voters have been willing to tradeoff their ideological attachments in exchange of a higher level of income – obtained through the cash transfer payments provided by the program. Our estimates correct for potential simultaneity problems previously identified by the literature in this field. Our results provide empirical support for both hypotheses and open the discussion on how to prevent the use of large anti-poverty programs for political purposes.
    Date: 2011–03–21
  3. By: Francisco H. G. Ferreira (World Bank); Anna Fruttero (World Bank); Phillippe Leite (World Bank); Leonardo Lucchetti (University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign)
    Abstract: Food price inflation in Brazil in the twelve months to June 2008 was 18 percent, while overall inflation was 5.3 percent. This paper uses spatially disaggregated monthly data on consumer prices and two different household surveys to estimate the welfare consequences of these food price increases, and their distribution across households. Because Brazil is a large food producer, with a predominantly wage-earning agricultural labor force, our estimates include general equilibrium effects on market and transfer incomes, as well as the standard estimates of changes in consumer surplus. While the expenditure (or consumer surplus) effects were large, negative and markedly regressive everywhere, the market income effect was positive and progressive, particularly in rural areas. Because of this effect on the rural poor, and of the partial protection afforded by increases in two large social assistance benefits, the overall impact of higher food prices in Brazil was U-shaped, with the middle-income groups suffering larger proportional losses than the very poor. Nevertheless, since Brazil is 80 percent urban, higher food prices still led to a greater incidence and depth of poverty at the national level.
    Keywords: Food prices, welfare, poverty, inequality, price change incidence curve, Brazil.
    JEL: D31 I38 O15
    Date: 2011
  4. By: Forslund, Kristine; Lima, Lycia; Panizza, Ugo
    Abstract: This paper uses a new dataset on the composition of public debt in developing and emerging market countries to look at the correlation between country characteristics and domestic debt share. While the paper finds that most variables have the expected sign, it also finds that country characteristics cannot explain regional differences in the composition of public debt. Moreover, the paper finds a weak correlation between inflationary history and the composition of public debt. The paper explores the determinants of this finding and shows that the results are driven by the presence of capital controls.
    Keywords: Public debt, Government bond markets, Debt structure, Sovereign bonds
    JEL: F21 F34 F36 G15
    Date: 2011–06

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