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Helping the Poor to Help Themselves: Debt Relief or Aid

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  • Serkan Arslanalp
  • Peter Blair Henry

Abstract

Debt relief is unlikely to stimulate investment and growth in the world's highly indebted poor countries (HIPCs). This is because the HIPCs do not suffer from debt overhang. The principal obstacle to investment and growth in the world's poorest countries is a lack of basic economic institutions that provide the foundation for profitable economic activity. If the goal is to help poor countries build the institutions that best suit their development needs, then the energy and resources currently devoted to the HIPC initiative could be more effectively employed as direct foreign aid.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc in its series NBER Working Papers with number 10230.

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Date of creation: Jan 2004
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Publication status: published as Jochnick, Chris and Fraser A. Preston (eds.) Sovereign Debt at the Crossroads. Oxford University Press, 2006.
Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:10230

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Citations

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Cited by:
  1. Silvia Marchesi & Alessandro Missale, 2012. "How defensive were lending and aid to HIPC?," Working Papers 220, University of Milano-Bicocca, Department of Economics, revised Feb 2012.
  2. Tengstam, Sven, 2006. "Debt relief and adjustment effort in a multi-period model," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 91(1), pages 127-130, April.
  3. Johansson, Pernilla, 2008. "Debt Relief, Investment and Growth," Working Papers 2008:11, Lund University, Department of Economics.
  4. HEPP, Ralf, 2010. "CONSEQUENCES OF DEBT RELIEF INITIATIVES IN THE 1990s," Applied Econometrics and International Development, Euro-American Association of Economic Development, vol. 10(1).
  5. Knoll, Martin, 2013. "The heavily indebted poor countries and the multilateral debt relief initiative: A test case for the validity of the debt overhang hypothesis," Discussion Papers 2013/11, Free University Berlin, School of Business & Economics.
  6. Nicolas Depetris Chauvin & Aart Kraay, 2007. "Who Gets Debt Relief?," Journal of the European Economic Association, MIT Press, vol. 5(2-3), pages 333-342, 04-05.
  7. Sen, Swapan & Kasibhatla, Krishna M. & Stewart, David B., 2007. "Debt overhang and economic growth-the Asian and the Latin American experiences," Economic Systems, Elsevier, vol. 31(1), pages 3-11, March.
  8. Nicolas Depetris Chauvin & Aart Kraay, 2005. "What Has 100 Billion Dollars Worth of Debt Relief Done for Low- Income Countries?," International Finance 0510001, EconWPA.
  9. Patricia Alvarez-Plata & Tilman Brück, 2006. "External Debt in Post-Conflict Countries," Discussion Papers of DIW Berlin 613, DIW Berlin, German Institute for Economic Research.

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