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  • Author: Michael Bleaney, Akira Nishiyama
  • Publication Date: 01-2004
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: United Nations University
  • Abstract: The causes of the slow growth of CFA countries are investigated. There is little difference in this respect between the CFA and other sub-Saharan African countries. Since 1970, GDP growth in the CFA countries has shown no significant trend but one or two medium-term fluctuations (positive in 1979-83 and negative in 1989-93). Internationally, the income share of the poorest 20 per cent of the population of any country has improved most in poor countries, and there is no evidence that this does not apply to CFA countries also.
  • Topic: Economics, Human Welfare, International Political Economy, International Trade and Finance
  • Political Geography: Africa
  • Author: David Fielding
  • Publication Date: 01-2004
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: United Nations University
  • Abstract: The West African Economic and Monetary Union (UEMOA) has a history of monetary stability and low inflation. Nevertheless, there is substantial variation in relative prices within some UEMOA countries, in particular in the price of food relative to other elements of the retail price index (IHPC). Using monthly time-series data for cities within the region, we analyze the impact of changes in monetary policy instruments on the relative prices of components of the IHPC. We are then able to explore how the burden of monetary policy innovations is likely to be shared between the rich and poor.
  • Topic: Economics, Human Welfare, International Political Economy, International Trade and Finance
  • Political Geography: Africa
  • Author: Anthony Shorrocks
  • Publication Date: 01-2004
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: United Nations University
  • Abstract: This paper establishes the principles which should govern the welfare and inequality analysis of heterogeneous income distributions. Two basic criteria—the 'equity preference' condition and the 'compensation principle'—are shown to be fundamentally incompatible. The paper favours the latter, thereby vindicating the traditional method of dealing with heterogeneous samples. However, inequality and welfare comparisons will usually be well defined only if equivalent incomes are obtained using constant scale factors; and researchers will need to distinguish clearly between inequality of nominal incomes and inequality of living standards. Furthermore, household observations must always be weighted according to family size.
  • Topic: Demographics, Economics, Human Welfare, Poverty
  • Author: Ernest Aryeetey
  • Publication Date: 03-2004
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: United Nations University
  • Abstract: Efforts to realize the issue of development-focused Special Drawing Rights (SDR) by the International Monetary Fund (IMF) have been on-going for many years. Recently, however, the campaign first gained a new momentum immediately after the Asian financial crises with the new liquidity problems of developing nations following the collapse of private capital markets. Currently the search for financing options towards the achievement of the Millennium Development Goals drives the interest in development-focused SDRs. Extending the uses to which SDR can be put is derived from the growing demands on the international financial system to respond to the development finance needs of poor nations. Apart from the need to provide emergency funds in times of crises and the whole area of crisis prevention, increasingly the facilitation of development in poor countries and assistance to make the best policy decisions is considered crucial.
  • Topic: Development, Economics, International Political Economy, International Trade and Finance
  • Political Geography: Asia
  • Author: Anthony B. Atkinson
  • Publication Date: 09-2004
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: United Nations University
  • Abstract: In order to achieve the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), substantial additional external funding needs to be mobilized. Estimates differ, but a 'ballpark' figure is an annual increase of US$50 billion. This could be achieved by a doubling of official development assistance (ODA). Welcome steps have been made in that direction, but this takes time, and time is of the essence. For this reason alone, it is necessary to consider new sources.
  • Topic: Development, Economics, International Cooperation, United Nations
  • Political Geography: United States
  • Author: Matthew Odedokun
  • Publication Date: 03-2004
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: United Nations University
  • Abstract: External development finance consists of those foreign sources of funds that promote or at least have the potential to promote development in the destination countries if delivered in the appropriate form. This rather broad definition qualifies all forms of external finance, and the quality and quantity of their inflows to developing countries are thus covered in the studies that form the background to this Policy Brief. These include official bilateral and multilateral, private commercial, and private noncommercial flows. A common characteristic is that all these types of flows are inadequate or becoming inadequate on the one hand and that their distribution is lopsided geographically and/or temporally, on the other.
  • Topic: Development, Economics, International Cooperation, United Nations
  • Author: Christina Boswell, Jeff Crisp
  • Publication Date: 02-2004
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: United Nations University
  • Abstract: In recent years, the issues of international migration and asylum have risen to the top of the international agenda. The pressures and opportunities linked to the process of globalization have led to an increase in the number of people moving from one country and continent to another. At the same time, insecurity and armed conflict in many of the world's poorest and economically marginalized states have triggered new waves of displaced people.
  • Topic: Economics, Migration, Poverty, United Nations
  • Author: Andrés Solimano
  • Publication Date: 12-2003
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: United Nations University
  • Abstract: Remittances, after foreign direct investment, are currently the most important source of external finance to developing countries. Remittances surpass foreign aid, and tend to be more stable than such volatile capital flows as portfolio investment and international bank credit. Remittances are also an international redistribution from low-income migrants to their families in the home country.
  • Topic: Development, Economics, International Trade and Finance, Migration
  • Author: Anthony B. Atkinson
  • Publication Date: 12-2003
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: United Nations University
  • Abstract: In analysing proposals for new sources of development funding, there are several issues that arise across the board. What is the role of new sources in relation to existing overseas development assistance? Should we be seeking new sources that generate a double dividend? Can the key elements of a proposal be achieved by another route? What should be the fiscal architecture? Is there a modern transfer problem? It is with these general concerns that the present paper deals. Its aim is to bring to bear on global public finance the accumulated knowledge in the field of national public finance, and more generally public economics.
  • Topic: Development, Economics, International Trade and Finance
  • Author: Robin Boadway
  • Publication Date: 12-2003
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: United Nations University
  • Abstract: This paper considers lessons from the practice of fiscal federalism for guidance on new approaches to development finance. Despite the fact that inter-regional redistribution in a federation relies on a central government with strong fiscal powers, the form of that redistribution can be used as a benchmark for international development assistance financing. In a federation, finance for less-developed regions takes the form of equalizing transfers to sub-national governments. The objective of these transfers is to enable sub-national governments to provide comparable levels of public services at comparable tax rates, called fiscal equity, leaving them discretion to implement interpersonal redistribution schemes within their jurisdictions. This same principle of assuming that national governments rather than donor nations are responsible for vertical equity within their borders leads to the view that the ideal form of development assistance is a system of equalizing inter-nation transfers intended to enhance fiscal equity.
  • Topic: Development, Economics, Government, International Trade and Finance
  • Author: Agnar Sandmo
  • Publication Date: 12-2003
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: United Nations University
  • Abstract: This paper considers the role of global environmental taxes both as instruments for improving the global environment and as a source of revenue for funding economic development. It reviews the general case for environmental taxes and the particular issues that arise for the adoption of such taxes in an international setting without a single jurisdiction. It also discusses the possibilities for political acceptance of such taxes when tax revenue is linked to the goal of economic development. The revenue potential of global environmental taxes is evaluated with special reference to a global carbon tax. It is found that this tax alone has the potential to raise sufficient revenue to finance the United Nations' Millennium Development Goals.
  • Topic: Development, Economics, Environment, International Trade and Finance
  • Author: George Mavrotas
  • Publication Date: 12-2003
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: United Nations University
  • Abstract: The paper uses an aid disaggregation approach to examine the impact of different types of aid on the fiscal sector of the aid-recipient country. It uses time-series data on different types of aid (project aid, programme aid, technical assistance and food aid) for Uganda, an important aid recipient in recent years, to estimate a model of fiscal response in the presence of aid which combines aid disaggregation and endogenous aid. The empirical findings clearly suggest the importance of the above approach for delving deeper into aid effectiveness issues since different aid categories have different effects on key fiscal variables—an impact that could not be revealed if a single figure for aid was employed. More precisely, project aid and food aid appear to cause a reduction in public investment whereas programme aid and technical assistance are positively related to public investment. The same applies for government consumption. A negligible impact on government tax and non-tax revenues, and a strong displacement of government borrowing are also found.
  • Topic: Economics, International Trade and Finance, Poverty
  • Political Geography: Uganda, Africa
  • Author: George Mavrotas, Salvatore Capasso
  • Publication Date: 12-2003
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: United Nations University
  • Abstract: The paper presents a model in which credit-constrained firms might delay the adoption of new and more productive technologies because of the very high external financing costs they face. Our point of departure is that the efficiency of the banking system can have a profound impact on real resource and investment allocation not only directly, by reducing the amount of resources channelled to the credit market, but also indirectly by affecting entrepreneurs' investment decisions. Along these lines of reasoning we develop a model of information asymmetries in the credit market in which high costs of processing bank loan applications might obstruct investments in high-tech projects and favour, instead, low-return, self-financed investments in mature sectors. The result is that these kinds of costs have a negative impact on the average capital productivity and on the rate of economic growth. In specific circumstances, the combination of these costs and the dynamics of capital accumulation can be such that the economy incurs in a 'technology trap', in which new technologies, even if readily available, will never be adopted because of high frictions and inefficiencies in the credit market, a situation that seems to be relevant to many developing countries.
  • Topic: Development, Economics, International Trade and Finance
  • Author: Ilene Grabel
  • Publication Date: 12-2003
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: United Nations University
  • Abstract: This paper explores two proposals to tax financial flows in developing economies—the package of policies implemented to various degrees by Chile and Colombia during the 1990s, widely referred to today as the Chilean model—and securities transactions taxes (STTs). I find that each provides a viable mechanism to raise revenue in some developing countries. Both can be introduced unilaterally (with the prospect of multilateral coordination in the future); both are progressive in their incidence, and in the case of the STT, represents an administratively manageable form of revenue collection. I also find that each entails double dividends that manifest in greater domestic and international macroeconomic stability.
  • Topic: Development, Economics, International Trade and Finance
  • Author: Machiko Nissanke
  • Publication Date: 12-2003
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: United Nations University
  • Abstract: The paper assesses the potential of currency transaction taxes (CTT, widely known as the Tobin tax), to raise revenue for global development. Though Tobin proposed and others assessed CTTs in terms of reducing exchange rate volatility and improving macroeconomic policy environments, this paper considers the CTT first and foremost from the standpoint of revenue. With a view of establishing a 'permissible' range of tax rates to obtain realistic estimates of revenue potential, it first reviews the debate over the effects of CTT on market liquidity and the efficiency of foreign exchange markets, and assesses the Spahn proposal for a two-tier currency tax. It then moves to a discussion of the technical and political feasibility of CTT, followed by an evaluation of several new proposals, such as those advanced by Schmidt and Mendez. The paper presents revenue estimates from CTT in light of recent changes in the composition and structure of foreign exchange markets.
  • Topic: Development, Economics, Globalization, International Trade and Finance
  • Author: Tony Addison, Abdur R. Chowdhury
  • Publication Date: 12-2003
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: United Nations University
  • Abstract: The world lottery market now amounts to at least US$126 billion in sales. World market sales for all gaming products (public, charitable and commercial) total some US$1 trillion, of which Internet gambling accounts for US$32 billion. This paper assesses the prospects for harnessing this large and growing market for the purposes of development finance by means of a global lottery and a global premium bond (with the successful UK scheme providing a model for the latter). Each has different strengths: the global lottery can add to the supply of grant finance for development, while the global premium bond could be an attractive savings instrument for ethical investors. The paper concludes that global versions of both a lottery and a premium bond are viable and complementary in mobilizing more development finance.
  • Topic: Development, Economics, International Cooperation, International Trade and Finance
  • Political Geography: United Kingdom
  • Author: George J. Borjas
  • Publication Date: 12-2003
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: United Nations University
  • Abstract: The most important economic feature of immigration to the United States in the post-1965 period has been a significant deterioration in the economic performance of successive immigrant waves. The policy reaction to this trend would obviously differ if the entry wage disadvantage disappeared quickly, as the immigrants assimilated in the American economy and acquired skills and information valuable in the American labour market. This paper examines the determinants of economic assimilation, and discusses how the experience of earlier immigrant waves can provide valuable information about the assimilation process the new immigrants will likely experience.
  • Topic: Economics, Migration
  • Political Geography: United States, America
  • Author: Sanghamitra Bandyopadhyay
  • Publication Date: 11-2003
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: United Nations University
  • Abstract: This paper documents the convergence of incomes across Indian states over the period 1965 to 1998. It departs from traditional analyses of convergence by tracking the evolution of the entire income distribution, instead of standard regression and time series analyses. The findings reveal twin-peaks dynamics-the existence of two income convergence clubs, one at 50 per cent, another at 125 per cent of the national average income. Income disparities across states seem to have declined over the 1960s, only to increase over the subsequent three decades. The observed polarization is strongly explained by the disparate distribution of infrastructure, and that of education, and to an extent by a number of macroeconomic indicators; that of capital expenditure and fiscal deficits.
  • Topic: Economics, Emerging Markets
  • Political Geography: South Asia, India
  • Author: Mina Baliamoune-Lutz, Tony Addison
  • Publication Date: 10-2003
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: United Nations University
  • Abstract: Using panel data this paper examines the effects of institutions on the success of reforms and integration in the Maghreb. Institutional quality measures are developed using fuzzy-set based transformations of civil liberties and political rights. We posit that these transformations are quite appropriate given the nature of freedom indicators. We show that using fuzzy-set transformed measures provides useful insights regarding the quality of institutions in Algeria, Morocco and Tunisia. Furthermore, our empirical results suggest that institutions play a significant role in the success or failure of economic reforms. This conclusion is in clear contrast to views that propose a sequencing in which civil liberties and political rights should come after economic reforms are already in place and fully operational.
  • Topic: Economics, Emerging Markets
  • Political Geography: Algeria, North Africa, Morocco, Tunisia
  • Author: Anthony Shorrocks, Stanislav Kolenikov
  • Publication Date: 10-2003
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: United Nations University
  • Abstract: This paper applies a new decomposition technique to the study of variations in poverty across the regions of Russia. The procedure, which is based on the Shapley value in cooperative game theory, allows the deviation in regional poverty levels from the all- Russia average to be attributed to three proximate sources; mean income per capita, inequality, and local prices. Contrary to expectation, regional poverty variations turn out to be due more to differences in inequality across regions than to differences in real income per capita. However, when real income per capita is split into nominal income and price components, differences in nominal incomes emerge as more important than either inequality or price effects for the majority of regions.
  • Topic: Economics, Poverty
  • Political Geography: Russia, Europe, Asia
  • Author: Luc Christiaensen, Lionel Demery, Stefano Paternostro
  • Publication Date: 09-2003
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: United Nations University
  • Abstract: This study traces the interactions between economic growth, income inequality and consumption poverty in a sample of African countries during the 1990s. It draws on the much-improved household data sets now available in the region. It finds that experiences have varied: some countries have seen sharp falls in income poverty; others have witnessed marked increases. Economic growth has been 'pro-poor' in that the incomes of poor households have typically grown at similar or faster rates than average income. But the aggregate numbers hide significant and systematic distributional effects which have caused some groups and regions to be left behind. The paper explores the contours of these effects, and draws three key conclusions. First, agricultural market liberalization has been conducive to reductions in rural poverty. Second, market connectedness is crucial for poor producers to take advantage of the opportunities offered by economic growth. Some regions and households by virtue of their sheer remoteness have been left behind when growth picks up. The availability of infrastructure (especially roads) and proximity to markets are crucial. And finally risks, such as rainfall variations and ill health are found to have profound effects on poverty outcomes, underscoring the significance of social protection in poverty reduction strategies in Africa.
  • Topic: Economics, Poverty
  • Political Geography: Africa
  • Author: Almas Heshmati
  • Publication Date: 09-2003
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: United Nations University
  • Abstract: In this paper we present two composite indices of globalization. The first is based on the Kearney/Foreign Policy magazine and the second is obtained from principal component analysis. They indicate which countries have become most globalized and show how globalization has developed over time. The indices are composed of four components: economic integration, personal contact, technology and political engagement, each generated from a number of variables. A breakdown of the index into major components provides possibilities to identify sources of globalization and associate it with economic policy measures. The empirical results show that a low rank in the globalization process is due to political and personal factors with limited possibility for the developing countries to affect. The high ranked developed countries share similar patterns in distribution of various components. The indices were also used in a regression analysis to study the causal relationship between income inequality and globalization. Globalization indices explain only 7 to 11 per cent of the variations in income inequality among countries.
  • Topic: Development, Economics, Globalization
  • Author: Ruslan Yemtsov
  • Publication Date: 09-2003
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: United Nations University
  • Abstract: This paper analyses regional data on inequality and poverty in Russia during 1994-2000 using published series from the regionally representative Household Budget Survey. The paper finds that the share of inequality in Russia coming from the between-regions component is large (close to a third of the total inequality), growing, and accounts for most of the increase in national inequality over 1994-2000. The paper demonstrates an absence of interregional convergence in incomes across Russian regions using various techniques. On the other hand, the paper finds evidence of convergence in inequality within regions, trended towards an internationally high level. Based on these two findings, the paper projects dynamics of inequality and poverty in Russia over a ten-year time horizon. The projections show that if the observed trend continues, by 2010 the absolute majority of Russia's poor will be concentrated in a few permanently impoverished regions, while relatively more affluent regions will become virtually free of poverty. Finally, the paper relates fluctuations in inequality within regions to a set of factors classified into four broad categories: endowments and initial conditions, preferences, policies, and shocks. Among these factors short-run fluctuations of the unemployment rate are revealed as significant and strong signals of inequality.
  • Topic: Demographics, Economics, Poverty
  • Political Geography: Russia, Europe, Asia
  • Author: Oliver Morrissey, Dirk Willem te Velde
  • Publication Date: 09-2003
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: United Nations University
  • Abstract: This paper uses data on individual earnings in manufacturing industry for five African countries in the early 1990s to test whether firms located in the capital city pay higher wages than firms located elsewhere, and whether such benefits accrue to all or only certain types of workers. Earnings equations are estimated that take into account worker characteristics (education and tenure) and relevant firm characteristics (notably size and whether foreign owned). Any location effect identified is therefore additional to appropriate control variables. There are two main findings. First, we find evidence of a 'pure capital city premium' equivalent to between 12 per cent and 28 per cent of nominal average earnings in the five countries. In some countries this location premium exceeds plausible consumer price differentials, between the capital and other urban areas. This does suggest that real (purchasing power) manufacturing wages are higher in the capital city (although this real premium is no more than ten per cent). Second, we find that skilled workers earn a higher wage premium in the capital city than those less skilled. However, this is not because of location effects on earnings per se, but rather because of other firm characteristics of firms located in the capital city, such as size and foreign ownership. This suggests that spatial inequality in itself does not directly contribute to skilled–less-skilled wage differentials.
  • Topic: Economics, Industrial Policy
  • Political Geography: Africa
  • Author: Basudeb Guha-Khasnobis
  • Publication Date: 09-2003
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: United Nations University
  • Abstract: With the help of a simple model of production and trade, we examine the differential impact of tariff escalation on skilled and unskilled wages in an economy. Our findings provide a lobbying-based explanation of the prevalence of tariff escalation in developed countries. It also predicts the possible response of a developing country and shows how similar lobbying activity in that country can slow the pace of liberalization of service sector trade.
  • Topic: Development, Economics, International Trade and Finance
  • Author: Andrés Rodríguez-Pose, Javier Sánchez-Reaza
  • Publication Date: 09-2003
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: United Nations University
  • Abstract: The paper analyses the impact trade liberalization and economic integration have had on regional growth and regional disparities in Mexico over the last two decades. It is highlighted that the passage from an import substitution system to membership of the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT) first, and to economic integration in the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) later, has been associated with greater concentration of economic activity and territorial polarization. The analysis also shows that these changes herald a period of transition between two growth models. Regional growth in the final stages of the import substitution period was mainly characterized by convergence and linked to the presence of oil and raw materials and proximity to Mexico City. Economic liberalization and regional integration in NAFTA has been related to regional divergence, a reduction of the importance of Mexico City as the main market and to the emergence of an economic system in which the endowment of skilled labour starts to play a more important role.
  • Topic: Economics, International Trade and Finance
  • Political Geography: North America, Mexico
  • Author: André Decoster, Inna Verbina
  • Publication Date: 08-2003
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: United Nations University
  • Abstract: The interplay of a differentiated indirect tax structure and the variation in expenditure patterns across households, leads to a possibly unequal distribution of indirect tax liabilities across the population. This paper uses the ninth round of the RLMS survey to assess the distributional consequences of the two major components of the indirect tax system: VAT and excise taxes. The global indirect system can be considered to be progressive overall, according to the Kakwani index. Decomposition into constituent terms shows that this is due not only to a progressive VAT structure, but also to progressive excise taxes. This surprising result is mainly explained by the progressivity of the excise tax on car fuel, but might also be sensitive to peculiarities in the data about alcohol consumption.
  • Topic: Development, Economics, Government
  • Political Geography: Russia
  • Author: Carlos Azzoni, Naercio Menezes-Filho, Tatiane Menezes
  • Publication Date: 08-2003
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: United Nations University
  • Abstract: In this paper we address the issues involved with the use of microeconomic data, that is, household surveys, to compare the patterns of income growth among different regions instead of the commonly used aggregate data. In particular, we investigate the issues of aggregation of household income to regional income and the problem of demography. As returns to experience generally differ across regions, differences in the patterns of income growth across regions in the same time interval will differ across age groups, which means that convergence or divergence of aggregate income among regions will depend on the age structure of their population. We apply these concepts to the case of the states of Brazil, for which we have repeated cross sections from a rich household survey. We find that patterns of income growth vary a great deal across birth cohorts, depending on the economic returns to experience.
  • Topic: Demographics, Development, Economics
  • Political Geography: Brazil
  • Author: Alan Heston, Bettina Aten
  • Publication Date: 08-2003
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: United Nations University
  • Abstract: Accurate regional estimates of output are desired as an indicator of level of development and as a variable used to explain internal migration, demand patterns, fertility and other aspects of behaviour. This chapter explores one often neglected aspect of regional income differences, namely that due to price differences or regional purchasing power parities. When nominal regional income measures are adjusted for these price level differences they are termed real regional incomes. The preferred method of estimating regional purchasing power parities by detailed price comparisons is discussed for Brazil, the United States and the European Union. The empirical thrust of the chapter is an investigation of different methods for estimating regional real incomes based on PPP data for 167 countries and nominal regional incomes and other data for about 870 administrative areas at the subnational level. Even in their present form we believe the real income estimates provided for the geographical units present opportunities for understanding the world economic structure.
  • Topic: Development, Economics, International Trade and Finance
  • Political Geography: United States, Europe, Brazil
  • Author: Jed Friedman
  • Publication Date: 08-2003
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: United Nations University
  • Abstract: This paper uses six nationally representative household consumption surveys to develop successive poverty profiles for Indonesia over a fifteen-year period of sustained high growth followed by rapid contraction. Adopting a 'cost-of-basic-needs' approach to poverty determination (an approach particularly suited to measures of absolute poverty), this paper develops price indices and calculates poverty lines from unit value data, an oft neglected source of information. The summary findings confirm that Indonesia has witnessed broadbased gains in poverty reduction over the period 1984-96 and then a dramatic reversal during the recent financial crisis. These summary findings, however, mask substantial diversity in growth, inequality, and poverty change across Indonesian regions and so subsequent analysis focuses on the links between growth, inequality, and changes in poverty at the regional level. As opposed to previous studies of poverty change that have used short panels of cross-national data to identify the relationship between growth and poverty, this study employs a longer panel for a single country in order to investigate how poverty change at the provincial level varies with province growth rates and province changes in inequality (while controlling for time invariant province characteristics). The results indicate that poverty change is highly responsive to overall growth. However closer analysis reveals that regional differences in poverty levels persist even after controlling for the effects of provincial income levels, particularly for rural areas. These findings suggest that local factors play an important role in poverty determination and may interact with growth to impact poverty reduction in differing ways across Indonesia. Future investigations will need to take a more careful look at these local determinants of poverty change and attempt to identify the types of growth toward which poverty measures are particularly responsive.
  • Topic: Development, Economics, Poverty
  • Political Geography: Indonesia
  • Author: Martin Ravallion
  • Publication Date: 07-2003
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: United Nations University
  • Abstract: The paper tests for external effects of local economic activity on consumption and income growth at the farm household level using panel data from four provinces of post-reform rural China. The tests allow for nonstationary fixed effects in the consumption growth process. Evidence is found of geographic externalities, stemming from spillover effects of the level and composition of local economic activity and private returns to local human and physical infrastructure endowments. The results suggest an explanation for rural underdevelopment arising from underinvestment in certain externality-generating activities, of which agricultural development emerges as the most important.
  • Topic: Development, Economics
  • Political Geography: China, Asia
  • Author: Chris Elbers, Peter Lanjouw, Johan Mistiaen, Berk Ozler, Ken Simler
  • Publication Date: 07-2003
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: United Nations University
  • Abstract: Based on a statistical procedure that combines household survey data with population census data, this paper presents estimates of inequality for three developing countries at a level of disaggregation far below that allowed by household surveys alone. We show that while the share of within-community inequality in overall inequality is high, this does not necessarily imply that all communities in a given country are as unequal as the country as a whole. In fact, in all three countries there is considerable variation in inequality across communities. We also show that economic inequality is strongly correlated with geography, even after controlling for basic demographic and economic conditions.
  • Topic: Development, Economics
  • Political Geography: Africa, South America
  • Author: Almas Heshmati, Jaan Masso
  • Publication Date: 07-2003
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: United Nations University
  • Abstract: For transition economies labour market flexibility is necessary for successful restructuring and reallocation of labour force and for coping with the requirements of the European Monetary Union. In this paper we apply a novel approach to the issue of labour market flexibility in transition countries by studying the optimality and efficiency of labour usage among Estonian manufacturing enterprises. A dynamic model is employed where both the long run optimal level of employment and the speed at which actual employment is adjusted to the optimal are modelled as functions of several variables. Firm level panel data from 1995 to 1999 were used. The results showed that in the long run employment responds greatest to wages, followed by valueadded and capital stock. Speed of adjustment and labour use optimality and efficiency show much greater variations over firms than over time. In the course of time there occurs both labour saving technical change and an increase in the efficiency of labour usage. On average there is shortage of labour compared to firm's own optimal level, while over use of labour compared to best-practice technology. Capital seems to be a binding constraint on the development of employment in the Estonian labour market.
  • Topic: Development, Economics, Industrial Policy
  • Political Geography: Eastern Europe
  • Author: Ghosh Nilabja
  • Publication Date: 06-2003
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: United Nations University
  • Abstract: Trade liberalization, by aligning domestic prices with world prices, is envisaged to bring welfare gains to a country. In the case of Indian agriculture, owing to the vastness and diversity of the sector, the impact is likely to be profoundly unequal across regions especially when liberalization is double-edged, acting on both output and input sides. This paper views returns from land resource as a primary determinant of farmers' economic well-being and production incentive and considers paddy both as the dominant support for the rural population and as a product with comparative advantage, as most studies have demonstrated. Working with state and sub-state level data and taking account of the differences in technologies, productivities and transport costs, the paper finds that the gains vary regionally and may not be positive in all cases when both output and input prices are globally aligned.
  • Topic: Development, Economics, International Trade and Finance
  • Political Geography: South Asia, India
  • Author: Jon D. Haveman, Howard J. Shatz
  • Publication Date: 06-2003
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: United Nations University
  • Abstract: The Doha Ministerial Declaration emphasized that priority should be given to improving market access for products originating in the Least Developed Countries (LDCs). In this paper, we analyze the importance of this proposition with respect to market access in the Triad economies. We first present a brief history of non-reciprocal preferences granted by the Triad. This covers Generalized System of Preference (GSP) programmes in each, and further preferences granted to African, Caribbean and Pacific countries by the EU and preferences granted to Caribbean Basin, Andean, and African countries by the US. This history is followed by an assessment of trade generated by these preferences in the year 2000, and of the extent to which LDC exports might be expected to increase should the preferences be made comprehensive. Preferences in 2000 are shown to have led to an increase of US$3.5 billion in LDC exports, while a complete duty-free treatment could expand LDC exports by as much as US$7.6 billion, 90 per cent of which will be absorbed by the US. As this represents a doubling of LDC exports to these countries, we interpret these results as an endorsement of this priority in the Doha Round of negotiations.
  • Topic: Development, Economics, International Trade and Finance
  • Political Geography: Africa, United States, Caribbean
  • Author: Tony Addison, Almas Heshmati
  • Publication Date: 05-2003
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: United Nations University
  • Abstract: Foreign direct investment (FDI) has increased dramatically in recent years. However, the distribution of FDI is highly unequal and very poor countries face major difficulties in attracting foreign investors. This paper investigates the determinants of FDI inflows to developing countries, with a particular emphasis on the impact of the 'third wave of democratization' that started in the early 1980s and the spread of information and communication technology (ICT) that began in the late 1980s. These two global developments must now be taken into account in any explanation of what determines FDI flows. Using a large sample of countries, together with panel data techniques, the paper explores the determinants of FDI. The causal relationship between FDI, GDP growth, trade openness and ICT is investigated. The main findings are that democratization and ICT increase FDI inflows to developing countries. The paper concludes that more assistance should be given to poorer countries to help them to adopt ICT and to break out of their present 'low ICT equilibrium' trap.
  • Topic: Democratization, Development, Economics, International Trade and Finance
  • Author: George Mavrotas, Mario Reyna-Cerecero
  • Publication Date: 05-2003
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: United Nations University
  • Abstract: The paper deals with the success of price controls in stabilizing high inflation rates and their effects on the real economy under an imperfect competition setting derived by optimal maximization. Our model builds on Helpman's work of price controls and imperfect competition, and incorporates inflation inertia through adaptive expectations. The model predicts that under these circumstances price controls can be an effective method of curving inflation when they accompany an orthodox monetary restriction programme; incomes policies alone cannot curve inflation substantially. Efforts where monetary growth is decreased gradually and price controls are implemented to achieve zero inflation result in the boom-recession cycle observed in many real life programmes. When monetary growth is curved immediately and price controls are implemented to achieve zero inflation, there follows a recession and not a boom. Orthodox money-based stabilization programmes implemented on their own need more time to control inflation and always produce a recession.
  • Topic: Development, Economics, International Trade and Finance
  • Author: Matthew Odedokun
  • Publication Date: 05-2003
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: United Nations University
  • Abstract: This paper is an attempt to rectify some of the problems that characterize most earlier studies that seek to explain private capital flows to developing countries or, at least, to examine the subject from a different and complementary perspective. To accomplish this, we propose a model framework that approaches the issue from the perspective of a capital-exporting developed country and which also takes cognizance of developments in other industrialized countries that could be competing with developing countries for private capital flows. The model is operationalized and estimated with annual panel data over 1970-2000 for 19 capital-exporting developed countries. Specifically, we estimate equations for total private flows, FDI, total portfolio capital flows (PCF) and various categories of PCF. We also test for the effects of a number of factors, each of which has its own 'push' and 'pull' components. The specific explanatory factors are the level of per capita income, interest rate, economic growth, the prevailing phase of economic cycle, the degree of openness of the economy in the balance-of-payment capital account, macroeconomic imbalances, and external debt burden. The empirical findings confirm the posited effects of the 'push' and/or 'pull' component of each of the above factors.
  • Topic: Development, Economics, Emerging Markets, International Trade and Finance
  • Author: Jörg Mayer
  • Publication Date: 04-2003
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: United Nations University
  • Abstract: Market access liberalization has influenced product-specific growth of world exports and contributed to the shift in the structure of world exports of manufactures towards electrical and electronic goods (including parts and components), goods that require high R expenditures, and labour-intensive products such as clothing. Multilateral trade liberalization has strongly improved market access conditions for manufactures and partly explains why manufactures have experienced particularly strong growth in exports. The increased importance of vertical international production sharing and the associated preferential trading arrangements between geographically close countries with significantly different wage rates have been a key determinant of differences in export-value growth across individual manufactured products, as well as of the distribution of market shares for some of these products among developing countries. Projections based on a standard trade model suggest that moving to full trade liberalization would lead to an increase in the share of agricultural products in total world trade by almost two percentage points and give greater weight to the textile, clothing and automotive sectors within manufactured exports.
  • Topic: Development, Economics, Emerging Markets, International Trade and Finance
  • Author: Jonathon Moses, Bjørn Letnes
  • Publication Date: 04-2003
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: United Nations University
  • Abstract: In this paper we elaborate on the findings produced by an applied equilibrium model that is used to calculate the annual efficiency gains from free international migration. These findings suggest that we can expect significant gains from liberalizing international labour flows. In particular, we expand on two implicit aspects of the estimates: the actual number of migrants being generated by the various counter-factual scenarios, and the per-migrant cost/benefits associated with each. These estimates are then compared with contemporary migration flows and the findings of studies that analyse their economic impact. In light of these comparisons, we conclude that our original findings are not unreasonable.
  • Topic: Development, Economics, International Trade and Finance, Migration
  • Author: Stéphane Gagnon
  • Publication Date: 04-2003
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: United Nations University
  • Abstract: A firm's business model describes the way in which it creates, delivers, and appropriates value. In the debate about the ongoing demise of several e-commerce ventures, only a few analysts have looked at the relative sanity of innovative e-business Models, relying mostly on static environmental variables and the inherent economic logic of each industry. Our study sheds new light on this debate by concentrating on a set of more complex factors, namely the relative difficulty to build new capabilities, whether by creating or acquiring them. We interviewed 60 e-commerce ventures between 2 and 3 years old, both independent and corporate ones, in order to measure their performance, the innovativeness of their e-business model, their obstacles to capability building, and their exploitable resource base. By performing cluster, discriminant, and regression analyses, we demonstrate that a number of typical obstacles to capability building can significantly affect the relative success or failure of innovative e-business models, but that a richer resource base may alleviate this relationship. We end with a discussion of the implications for the e-business model literature, and point out to some new directions to explain how various e-commerce firms, whether 'pure-play' or 'click-and-mortar', can successfully innovate despite rampant capability building difficulties.
  • Topic: Economics, Emerging Markets, International Trade and Finance
  • Author: Inna Verbina
  • Publication Date: 04-2003
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: United Nations University
  • Abstract: Traditionally, the difference between income and expenditure reported in household surveys is used for estimation of savings at the household level. However, persistent deviation in consumption–income ratios by household income brackets raises questions about both the quality of data and the estimation method employed. This paper provides statistical evidence to accentuate the endogeneity bias, which is connected with the choice of welfare proxy for ranking process, in savings estimates by income groups. Also, two different estimators for households spending behaviour are discussed and the statistical properties of their difference are derived by the delta method.
  • Topic: Economics
  • Author: Maiju Perälä
  • Publication Date: 04-2003
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: United Nations University
  • Abstract: This paper extends the history of thought narrative on Allyn Young to recognize the close relationship that the classical growth theory has with the early development theory, as Young's externalities-fuelled, cumulative growth process influenced the theoretical thought of the early development theory pioneers, Paul Rosenstein-Rodan and Ragnar Nurkse. The conditions that prevent the development of underdeveloped regions, indivisibilities and inelasticities of supplies and demands, represent the breakdown of the conditions that Young highlights as necessary for self-sustaining growth to occur. Hence, Young's cumulative growth process underlies the view of these early development theorists, though their focus is on the malfunctioning and restarting of this process.
  • Topic: Development, Economics, Emerging Markets, International Trade and Finance, Poverty
  • Author: Maiju Perälä
  • Publication Date: 04-2003
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: United Nations University
  • Abstract: This paper examines growth successes and failures across countries and notes the latter's perplexing predominance among ex ante low-income economies. An explanation for this persistence of underdevelopment is proposed through an empirical investigation that brings forth evidence on the importance of natural resource endowment type on growth or, more appropriately, lack of it. The results show that, in the absence of social cohesion, the nature of natural resource abundance bears great significance as a natural resource endowment characterized by oil and/or mineral resources is more negatively correlated with growth than a resource endowment that is agricultural. The robustness of this result is tested across a number of growth regression specifications within the literature.
  • Topic: Agriculture, Development, Economics, Poverty
  • Author: Kræn Blume, Björn Gustafsson, Peder Pedersen, Mette Verner
  • Publication Date: 04-2003
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: United Nations University
  • Abstract: The paper focuses on the problems of low income among immigrants, analysed by using comparable panel datasets for two Scandinavian welfare states. After a brief survey of a few earlier studies on immigrant poverty, we present Denmark and Sweden as interesting cases for comparative research. Cyclical profiles have been very different since the 1980s and both countries have experienced considerable differences with regard to the number and composition of immigrants from the less developed countries. Poverty rates, analysed relative to different background factors, are fairly high, in particular when considering the welfare state background of Denmark and Sweden. A number of differences are found in spite of the institutional similarities between the two countries.
  • Topic: Economics, Migration, Political Economy, Poverty
  • Political Geography: Denmark, Sweden
  • Author: Philip Martin
  • Publication Date: 04-2003
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: United Nations University
  • Abstract: This paper explains the evolution and effects of Mexico-US migration, and highlights the NAFTA approach to economic integration, viz., free up trade and investment while stepping up efforts to prevent unauthorized migration. The European Union approach is different: provide aid first, and later free up trade and migration in the expectation that moves toward convergence will ensure minimal migration because trade has become a substitute for migration. The paper concludes that NAFTA will reduce unwanted Mexico-US migration in the medium to long term, and that different initial conditions in Europe mean that there will be relatively little east-west migration when nationals of new entrant EU members achieve freedom of movement.
  • Topic: Economics, Migration
  • Political Geography: United States, Europe, Mexico
  • Author: Mark McGillivray, Bazoumana Ouattara
  • Publication Date: 04-2003
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: United Nations University
  • Abstract: This paper examines the impact of foreign aid on public sector fiscal behaviour in Côte d'Ivoire. A special interest is the relationship between aid, debt servicing and debt, given that Côte d'Ivoire is a highly indebted country. The theoretical model employed differs from those of previous studies by highlighting the interaction between debt servicing and the other fiscal variables. This model is estimated using 1975–99 time series data. Key findings are that the bulk of aid is allocated to debt servicing and that aid is associated with increases in the level of public debt.
  • Topic: Debt, Development, Economics, International Trade and Finance
  • Political Geography: Africa
  • Author: Betina Dimaranan, Thomas Hertel, Roman Keeney
  • Publication Date: 04-2003
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: United Nations University
  • Abstract: An AGE model with detailed farm supply and substitution relationships is used to analyze impacts of OECD domestic support reform on developing economy welfare. Stylized simulations indicate reforms best suited for reducing trade distortions with least impact on farm incomes. Comprehensive reforms result in welfare losses for LDCs and large declines in OECD farm incomes. Shifting from market price support to land-based payments designed to maintain farm incomes results in increased welfare for most developing countries. LDCs should focus on improved market access to OECD economies while permitting said economies to continue domestic support payments not linked to output/variable inputs.
  • Topic: Agriculture, Development, Economics, International Trade and Finance
  • Author: Almas Heshmati, Rohieh Gholami, Sang-Yong Tom Lee
  • Publication Date: 04-2003
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: United Nations University
  • Abstract: This paper investigates the simultaneous causal relationship between investments in information and communication technology (ICT) and foreign direct investment (FDI), with reference to its implications on economic growth. For the empirical analysis we use data from 23 major countries with heterogeneous economics development for the period 1976–99. The results of unit roots and Johansen co-integration tests indicate variations in degrees of integration among the sample countries. Our causality test results suggest that there is a causal relationship from ICT to FDI interpreted as the higher level of ICT investment leads to increased inflow of FDI. ICT contributes to economic growth indirectly by attracting more foreign direct investment. In developed countries there already exist a build up ICT capacity which causes inflow of FDI, while in developing countries ICT capacity must be build up to attract FDI. The inflow of FDI causes further increases in ICT investment and capacity.
  • Topic: Development, Economics, Emerging Markets, International Political Economy
  • Author: Ana María Iregui
  • Publication Date: 03-2003
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: United Nations University
  • Abstract: This paper computes the worldwide efficiency gains from the elimination of global restrictions on labour mobility using a multiregional CGE model. A distinctive feature of our analysis is the introduction of a segmented labour market, as two types of labour are considered: skilled and unskilled. According to our results, the elimination of global restrictions on the mobility of skilled and unskilled labour generates worldwide efficiency gains that could be of considerable magnitude. When only skilled labour migrates, the worldwide efficiency gains are smaller, as this type of labour represents a small fraction of the labour force in developing regions.
  • Topic: Economics, Emerging Markets, International Political Economy, Migration, Regional Cooperation