IDEAS home Printed from
   My bibliography  Save this article

Resources, Agriculture, and Economic Growth in Economies in Transition


  • Gylfason, Thorvaldur


This paper reviews some reasons why natural resource abundance and extensive agriculture appear to impede economic growth around the world. The paper presents empirical, cross-sectional evidence of various aspects of this relationship in the transition economies in Central and Eastern Europe and Central Asia since 1990. The essence of the argument is that heavy dependence on natural resources and agriculture may result in rent seeking (e.g., corruption) and policy failures (e.g., inflation) and may, moreover, discourage education, external trade, and genuine saving, thereby retarding economic growth. The paper concludes with a brief discussion of the policy implications of the analysis. Copyright 2000 by WWZ and Helbing & Lichtenhahn Verlag AG

Suggested Citation

  • Gylfason, Thorvaldur, 2000. "Resources, Agriculture, and Economic Growth in Economies in Transition," Kyklos, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 53(4), pages 545-579.
  • Handle: RePEc:bla:kyklos:v:53:y:2000:i:4:p:545-79

    Download full text from publisher

    To our knowledge, this item is not available for download. To find whether it is available, there are three options:
    1. Check below whether another version of this item is available online.
    2. Check on the provider's web page whether it is in fact available.
    3. Perform a search for a similarly titled item that would be available.

    Other versions of this item:

    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Gylfason, Thorvaldur, 2001. "Nature, Power, and Growth," Scottish Journal of Political Economy, Scottish Economic Society, vol. 48(5), pages 558-588, November.
    2. Gylfason, Thorvaldur & Herbertsson, Tryggvi Thor, 2001. "Does inflation matter for growth?," Japan and the World Economy, Elsevier, vol. 13(4), pages 405-428, December.
    3. Sachs, J-D & Warner, A-M, 1995. "Natural Resource Abundance and Economic Growth," Papers 517a, Harvard - Institute for International Development.
    4. Bhagwati, Jagdish N, 1982. "Directly Unproductive, Profit-seeking (DUP) Activities," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 90(5), pages 988-1002, October.
    5. Krueger, Anne O, 1974. "The Political Economy of the Rent-Seeking Society," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 64(3), pages 291-303, June.
    6. repec:cup:macdyn:v:3:y:1999:i:2:p:204-25 is not listed on IDEAS
    7. Gylfason, Thorvaldur, 1998. "Output gains from economic stabilization," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 56(1), pages 81-96, June.
    8. Gylfason, Thorvaldur, 1999. "Exports, Inflation and Growth," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 27(6), pages 1031-1057, June.
    9. David H. Romer & Jeffrey A. Frankel, 1999. "Does Trade Cause Growth?," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 89(3), pages 379-399, June.
    10. Gylfason, Thorvaldur & Herbertsson, Tryggvi Thor & Zoega, Gylfi, 1997. "A Mixed Blessing: Natural Resources and Economic Growth," CEPR Discussion Papers 1668, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    11. Cheryl W. Gray & Daniel Kaufman, 1998. "Corruption and Development," World Bank Other Operational Studies 11545, The World Bank.
    12. Edwards, Sebastian, 1998. "Openness, Productivity and Growth: What Do We Really Know?," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 108(447), pages 383-398, March.
    13. Gylfason, Thorvaldur & Herbertsson, Tryggvi Thor & Zoega, Gylfi, 1999. "A Mixed Blessing," Macroeconomic Dynamics, Cambridge University Press, vol. 3(02), pages 204-225, June.
    14. Auty, Richard M., 1994. "Industrial policy reform in six large newly industrializing countries: The resource curse thesis," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 22(1), pages 11-26, January.
    15. Jeffrey D. Sachs & Andrew Warner, 1995. "Economic Reform and the Process of Global Integration," Brookings Papers on Economic Activity, Economic Studies Program, The Brookings Institution, vol. 26(1, 25th A), pages 1-118.
    16. Paolo Mauro, 1995. "Corruption and Growth," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 110(3), pages 681-712.
    17. Jeffrey D. Sachs, 1989. "Social Conflict and Populist Policies in Latin America," NBER Working Papers 2897, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • O13 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - Agriculture; Natural Resources; Environment; Other Primary Products
    • P24 - Economic Systems - - Socialist Systems and Transition Economies - - - National Income, Product, and Expenditure; Money; Inflation
    • Q32 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Nonrenewable Resources and Conservation - - - Exhaustible Resources and Economic Development


    Access and download statistics


    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:bla:kyklos:v:53:y:2000:i:4:p:545-79. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Wiley-Blackwell Digital Licensing) or (Christopher F. Baum). General contact details of provider: .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If CitEc recognized a reference but did not link an item in RePEc to it, you can help with this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.