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Do Natural Resources Depress Income Per Capita?

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  • Rabah Arezki
  • Frederick Van der Ploeg

Abstract

Most evidence for the resource curse comes from cross-country growth regressions suffers from a bias originating from the high and ever-evolving volatility in commodity prices. This paper addresses these issues by providing new cross-country empirical evidence for the effect of resources in income per capita. Natural resource dependence (resource exports) has a significant negative effect on income per capita, especially in countries with bad rule of law or bad policies, but these results weaken substantially once we allow for endogeneity. However, the more exogenous measure of resource abundance (stock of natural capital) has a significant negative effect on income per capita even after controlling for geography, rule of law and de facto or de jure trade openness. Furthermore, this effect is more severe for countries that have little de jure trade openness. These results are robust to using alternative measures of institutional quality (expropriation and corruption instead of rule of law).

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File URL: http://www.cesifo-group.de/portal/page/portal/DocBase_Content/WP/WP-CESifo_Working_Papers/wp-cesifo-2010/wp-cesifo-2010-05/cesifo1_wp3056.pdf
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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by CESifo Group Munich in its series CESifo Working Paper Series with number 3056.

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Date of creation: 2010
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Handle: RePEc:ces:ceswps:_3056

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Keywords: resource curse; institutions; trade policies; income per capita;

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References

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  1. Rodrik, Dani & Subramanian, Arvind & Trebbi, Francesco, 2002. "Institutions Rule: The Primacy of Institutions Over Geography and Integration in Economic Development," CEPR Discussion Papers 3643, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
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  7. Boschini, Anne & Pettersson, Jan & Roine, Jesper, 2003. "Resource curse or not: A question of appropriability," Working Paper Series in Economics and Finance 534, Stockholm School of Economics.
  8. David H. Romer & Jeffrey A. Frankel, 1999. "Does Trade Cause Growth?," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 89(3), pages 379-399, June.
  9. Mehlum, Halvor & Moene, Karl-Ove & Torvik, Ragnar, 2003. "Institutions and the resource curse," Memorandum 29/2002, Oslo University, Department of Economics.
  10. Andrei Shleifer & Robert W. Vishny, 1998. "The Quality of Government," Harvard Institute of Economic Research Working Papers 1847, Harvard - Institute of Economic Research.
  11. Rigobon, Roberto & Rodrik, Dani, 2004. "Rule of Law, Democracy, Openness and Income: Estimating the Interrelationships," CEPR Discussion Papers 4653, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  12. Christa N. Brunnschweiler & Erwin H. Bulte, 2006. "The Resource Curse Revisited and Revised: A Tale of Paradoxes and Red Herrings," CER-ETH Economics working paper series 06/61, CER-ETH - Center of Economic Research (CER-ETH) at ETH Zurich.
  13. Edward L. Glaeser & Rafael La Porta & Florencio Lopez-de-Silanes & Andrei Shleifer, 2004. "Do Institutions Cause Growth?," Journal of Economic Growth, Springer, vol. 9(3), pages 271-303, 09.
  14. Stephen Knack & Philip Keefer, 1995. "Institutions And Economic Performance: Cross-Country Tests Using Alternative Institutional Measures," Economics and Politics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 7(3), pages 207-227, November.
  15. Jann Lay & Toman Omar Mahmoud, 2004. "Bananas, Oil, and Development: Examining the Resource Curse and Its Transmission Channels by Resource Type," Kiel Working Papers 1218, Kiel Institute for the World Economy.
  16. Stijns, Jean-Philippe C., 2005. "Natural resource abundance and economic growth revisited," Resources Policy, Elsevier, vol. 30(2), pages 107-130, June.
  17. Rabah Arezki & Frederick van der Ploeg, 2010. "Trade policies, institutions and the natural resource curse," Applied Economics Letters, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 17(15), pages 1443-1451.
  18. Dollar, David & Kraay, Aart, 2001. "Growth is good for the poor," Policy Research Working Paper Series 2587, The World Bank.
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Cited by:
  1. Frederick van der Ploeg, 2011. "Natural Resources: Curse or Blessing?," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 49(2), pages 366-420, June.
  2. Fabrizio Carmignani & Abdur Chowdhury, 2012. "The Geographical Dimension of the Development Effects of Natural Resources," Environmental & Resource Economics, European Association of Environmental and Resource Economists, vol. 52(4), pages 479-498, August.
  3. van der Ploeg, Frederick, 2006. "Challenges and Opportunities for Resource Rich Economies," CEPR Discussion Papers 5688, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  4. Carmignani, Fabrizio, 2013. "Development outcomes, resource abundance, and the transmission through inequality," Resource and Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 35(3), pages 412-428.
  5. Fidel Perez-Sebastian & Ohad Raveh, 2013. "The natural Resource Curse, Fiscal Decentralization, and Agglomeration Economies," OxCarre Working Papers 112, Oxford Centre for the Analysis of Resource Rich Economies, University of Oxford.
  6. Thomas Goda & Alejandro Torres, 2013. "Overvaluation of the real exchange rate and the Dutch Disease: the Colombian case," DOCUMENTOS DE TRABAJO CIEF 010930, UNIVERSIDAD EAFIT.

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