Special Issue "Economic Development in Africa"

A special issue of Economies (ISSN 2227-7099).

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 31 December 2018

Special Issue Editor

Guest Editor
Prof. Dr. Frank W. Agbola

Newcastle Business School, The Unviersity of Newcastle, University Dr, Callaghan NSW 2308, Australia
Website | E-Mail
Interests: Applied Econometrics, Development Economics, Agricultural Economics, International Economics, Financial Economics, Tourism Economics and SMEs

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

In a changing and unpredictable global economy, Africa is at a crossroads. Despite efforts by governments in Africa to sustain economic growth and development, the recent trajectory appears mixed. Many countries in Africa continue to experience increasing poverty, environmental degradation and other serious problems. These issues have become increasingly important following the global financial crisis where African countries have experienced declines in capital flows and slowing of economies. The widespread global challenges have meant the need for African countries to develop effective policies for ensuring sustainable economic growth and development. This Special Issue is devoted to examining the major challenges facing African countries and exploring the opportunities for achieving sustainable economic growth and development in the changing and ever volatile global economy. We welcome original papers relating to all aspects of economic growth and development in Africa.

Frank W. Agbola
Associate Professor of Economics
Guest Editor

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

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Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) is waived for well-prepared manuscripts submitted to this issue. Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Published Papers (7 papers)

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Research

Open AccessArticle Contextualizing Narratives of Economic Growth and Navigating Problematic Data: Economic Trends in Ethiopia (1999–2017)
Received: 9 September 2018 / Revised: 22 November 2018 / Accepted: 29 November 2018 / Published: 3 December 2018
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Abstract
There are common narratives about economic growth in Ethiopia. We analyze four common narratives, namely, that (1) the economy is transforming from agriculture to industry, (2) that national economic growth has been rapid and sustained, (3) that Ethiopia’s economy is largely agricultural, and
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There are common narratives about economic growth in Ethiopia. We analyze four common narratives, namely, that (1) the economy is transforming from agriculture to industry, (2) that national economic growth has been rapid and sustained, (3) that Ethiopia’s economy is largely agricultural, and (4) that there is a looming debt crisis, largely due to lending from China. In many instances, the justification for these narratives is based upon single years or specific data points. We examine these narratives over the long term, to assess if they are supported by available macroeconomic data. In doing so, we encountered significant issues with data quality and consistency. This article presents the available datasets from 1999 to 2017 and concludes that the commonly made claims about the Ethiopian economy are sometimes accurate, sometimes incomplete, and other times inaccurate. We call for greater attention to primary data, and primary datasets, as opposed to relying upon secondary summaries, single years, or specific data points to make generalized claims. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Economic Development in Africa)
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Open AccessArticle Macroeconomic and Distributional Impacts of Jatropha Based Biodiesel in Mali
Received: 31 March 2018 / Revised: 16 October 2018 / Accepted: 15 November 2018 / Published: 23 November 2018
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Abstract
Mali has introduced a program to produce biodiesel using jatropha, a shrub widely available throughout the country. The aim of the program is to partially substitute diesel, which is entirely supplied through imports, with domestically produced biodiesel. In this paper, we use a
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Mali has introduced a program to produce biodiesel using jatropha, a shrub widely available throughout the country. The aim of the program is to partially substitute diesel, which is entirely supplied through imports, with domestically produced biodiesel. In this paper, we use a computable general equilibrium (CGE) model and a microsimulation model to analyze macroeconomic and distributional impact of a hypothetical expansion of jatropha based biodiesel industry in Mali. We find that the expansion of biodiesel industry (i.e., both jatropha farming and oil conversion), would increase GDP, though slightly, if idle lands are utilized for jatropha cultivation. However, the expansion of jatropha would cause slight loss in GDP if the existing agriculture land is used for jatropha cultivation. The distributional results are slightly different. We find that rural poverty would decrease no matter whether idle lands or existing agricultural lands are used for jatropha plantation, although the percentage reductions in rural poverty are higher in the former compared to the latter case. Our results indicate that if governments plan to promote jatropha biodiesel they should not allow jatropha to compete with food staples on the existing land. Policies should be targeted to utilize the idle lands which have not been used for any productive use. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Economic Development in Africa)
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Open AccessArticle Public Health Expenditures and Health Outcomes: New Evidence from Ghana
Received: 7 July 2018 / Revised: 22 September 2018 / Accepted: 9 October 2018 / Published: 29 October 2018
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Abstract
The effect of government spending on population’s health has received attention over the past decades. This study re-examines the link between government health expenditures and health outcomes to establish whether government intervention in the health sector improves outcomes. The study uses annual data
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The effect of government spending on population’s health has received attention over the past decades. This study re-examines the link between government health expenditures and health outcomes to establish whether government intervention in the health sector improves outcomes. The study uses annual data for the period 1980–2014 on Ghana. The ordinary least squares (OLS) and the two-stage least squares (2SLS) estimators are employed for analyses; the regression estimates are then used to conduct cost-effectiveness analysis. The results show that, aside from income, public health expenditure contributed to the improvements in health outcomes in Ghana for the period. We find that, overall, increasing public health expenditure by 10% averts 0.102–4.4 infant and under-five deaths in every 1000 live births while increasing life expectancy at birth by 0.77–47 days in a year. For each health outcome indicator, the effect of income dominates that of public spending. The cost per childhood mortality averted ranged from US$0.20 to US$16, whereas the cost per extra life year gained ranged from US$7 to US$593.33 (2005 US$) during the period. Although the health effect of income outweighs that of public health spending, high (and rising) income inequality makes government intervention necessary. In this respect, development policy should consider raising health sector investment inter alia to improve health conditions. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Economic Development in Africa)
Open AccessFeature PaperArticle Willingness to Pay for Improved Household Solid Waste Collection in Blantyre, Malawi
Received: 27 April 2018 / Revised: 19 September 2018 / Accepted: 20 September 2018 / Published: 9 October 2018
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Abstract
Insufficient staff, inappropriate collection vehicles, limited operating budgets and growing, hard to reach populations mean that solid waste management remains limited in most developing countries; Malawi is no exception. We estimated the willingness to pay (WTP) for two hypothetical solid waste collection services.
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Insufficient staff, inappropriate collection vehicles, limited operating budgets and growing, hard to reach populations mean that solid waste management remains limited in most developing countries; Malawi is no exception. We estimated the willingness to pay (WTP) for two hypothetical solid waste collection services. Additionally, we tested the impact of the WTP question positioning relative to environmental perceptions on respondents’ WTP. The first scenario involved a five minute walk to a disposal facility; the second scenario involved a 30 min walk. Additionally, the order of the question was randomized within the questionnaire. A WTP value of K1780 was found for the five minute walk scenario when the question was placed first, and K2138 when placed after revealing the respondent’s perceptions on the environment. In the 30 min walk scenario, WTP was K945 when placed first and K1139 when placed after revealing the respondent’s perceptions on the environment. The estimated values indicate that there is both a willingness to pay for solid waste services and that there are at least two options that would be acceptable to the community; a pilot scale implementation would be required to validate the hypothetical values, especially given the dependency on problem framing. Community financing should be considered as a sustainable approach to solid waste management in underserved areas. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Economic Development in Africa)
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Open AccessArticle Democracy and Inter-Regional Trade Enhancement in Sub-Saharan Africa: Gravity Model
Received: 10 February 2018 / Revised: 25 July 2018 / Accepted: 25 July 2018 / Published: 6 August 2018
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Abstract
There has been considerable research on the effect of democracy on trade openness since the 1980s when development strategies toward free trade and democracy were rapidly adopted in developing countries. Most studies have focused on Asian, Latin American, and former soviet bloc countries
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There has been considerable research on the effect of democracy on trade openness since the 1980s when development strategies toward free trade and democracy were rapidly adopted in developing countries. Most studies have focused on Asian, Latin American, and former soviet bloc countries and few studies have focused on Sub-Saharan Africa (SSA). This study is an attempt to fill that gap and uses a gravity model approach to test the effects of democracy in SSA on trade. Our results show that democracy has substantial impact on openness to trade and SSA democratic countries will trade more with other countries irrespective of their level of democracy, when compared to non-democratic countries. The results do not vary much even when we use different sources of democracy variable. Also, democratic countries trade more among each other perhaps due to having a shared business environment. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Economic Development in Africa)
Open AccessArticle Did the Plan Sénégal Emergent Affect Cropping Decisions in the Senegal River Basin?
Received: 30 March 2018 / Revised: 2 June 2018 / Accepted: 11 July 2018 / Published: 23 July 2018
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Abstract
One of the basic debates in African development is whether agriculture can be the instrument for the transformation of a rural economy. A common question is whether agricultural policies can provide the impetus to move agriculture in developing economies from subsistence to commercial
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One of the basic debates in African development is whether agriculture can be the instrument for the transformation of a rural economy. A common question is whether agricultural policies can provide the impetus to move agriculture in developing economies from subsistence to commercial agriculture. Senegal’s Plan Sénégal Emergent (PSE) provides a data point in this discussion. Senegal and international donors invested in agricultural supply chains starting in 2012 to facilitate the emergence of commercial agriculture for peanuts, rice, and vegetables. This study focuses on these investments in the Senegal River Valley of northern Senegal. The empirical results presented in this study provide evidence that farms in the Senegal River Valley impacted by PSE have moved away from subsistence agriculture by planting more hectares in commercial crops. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Economic Development in Africa)
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Open AccessArticle Private Sector Credit and Inflation Volatility
Received: 8 December 2017 / Revised: 21 March 2018 / Accepted: 2 April 2018 / Published: 24 April 2018
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Abstract
This paper investigates the effect of inflation volatility on private sector credit growth. The results indicate that private sector credit growth is positively linked to the one period lagged inflation volatility. Given that past monetary policy actions continue to affect the targeted variables
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This paper investigates the effect of inflation volatility on private sector credit growth. The results indicate that private sector credit growth is positively linked to the one period lagged inflation volatility. Given that past monetary policy actions continue to affect the targeted variables due to the substantial lags in the transmission mechanism, the positive response of private sector credit growth to past inflation volatility suggests a credible monetary policy regime in Uganda, which has led to a reduction in the level of macroeconomic uncertainty and the restoration of favorable economic conditions and prospects, thus increasing the demand for credit. Further, the study finds that the lagged private sector credit growth, nominal exchange rate, and inflation have a statistically significant effect on private sector credit growth while financial innovation, interest rates, and GDP growth appear not to be important determinants of private sector credit growth. The robustness of our findings is confirmed by sensitivity checks. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Economic Development in Africa)
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