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Analyzing Growth and Welfare Effects of Public Policies in Models of Endogenous Growth with Human Capital: Evidence from South Africa

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  • Badibanga, Thaddee Mutumba
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    Abstract

    Since the abolition of its Apartheid regime in 1994, South Africa has launched a massive program of education, which has been financed through resources representing on average 21% of the national budget or 7% of GDP. Today, the GDP share of public spending on education is 1.3 times the average of industrialized countries (5.4%) and almost twice that of developing countries (3.9%). In this paper, we simulate fiscal policy experiments to analyze the growth and welfare effects of a shift in the allocation of government expenditures between public spending on education and transfers as well as those of a change in the tax rate in a model of endogenous growth with human capital accumulation for the South African economy. The results of simulations demonstrate that a shift in the allocation of fiscal resources between educational spending and transfers does not affect the long run allocation decisions. In the transition, however, this shift generates a negative effect on the rate of growth of GDP. In fact, a reallocation of expenditures shifts resources away from saving and toward consumption, and translate into lower rate of growth but higher welfare. Nonetheless, these growth and welfare effects are very small. On the other hand, a tax cut generates growth effects in the long run as well as in transition. In fact, reducing or cutting the tax rate in the long run lowers the interest rate, which in turn creates disincentives for saving and results in low rate of growth of GDP. However, in the transition, it reduces or removes distortions and translates into high work effort, high accumulation of human capital, and thus high rate of growth of GDP. Nonetheless, its welfare effect is negative.

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    Bibliographic Info

    Paper provided by American Agricultural Economics Association (New Name 2008: Agricultural and Applied Economics Association) in its series 2008 Annual Meeting, July 27-29, 2008, Orlando, Florida with number 6431.

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    Date of creation: 2008
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    Handle: RePEc:ags:aaea08:6431

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    Keywords: Fiscal Policy; Government Expenditures and Education; Growth Model; International Development; Labor and Human Capital; E62; H52; O41;

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    1. Boucekkine Raouf & Ruiz Tamarit Ramon, 2004. "Imbalance Effects in the Lucas Model: an Analytical Exploration," The B.E. Journal of Macroeconomics, De Gruyter, vol. 4(1), pages 1-19, December.
    2. Salvador Ortigueira, 1996. "Fiscal Policy in an Endogenous Growth Model with Human Capital Accumulation," Working Papers 9609, Centro de Investigacion Economica, ITAM.
    3. Timo Trimborn & Karl-Josef Koch & Thomas Steger, 2006. "Multi-Dimensional Transitional Dynamics: A Simple Numberical Procedure," CESifo Working Paper Series 1745, CESifo Group Munich.
    4. Michele Boldrin, 1992. "Public Education and Capital Accumulation," Discussion Papers 1017, Northwestern University, Center for Mathematical Studies in Economics and Management Science.
    5. Dolmas, Jim, 1996. "Endogenous Growth in Multisector Ramsey Models," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 37(2), pages 403-21, May.
    6. Jones, Larry E & Manuelli, Rodolfo E & Rossi, Peter E, 1993. "Optimal Taxation in Models of Endogenous Growth," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 101(3), pages 485-517, June.
    7. Caballe, Jordi & Santos, Manuel S, 1993. "On Endogenous Growth with Physical and Human Capital," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 101(6), pages 1042-67, December.
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