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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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Suggested Citation

  • Rabah Arezki & Frederick van der Ploeg, 2011. "Do Natural Resources Depress Income Per Capita?," Review of Development Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 15(3), pages 504-521, August.
  • Handle: RePEc:bla:rdevec:v:15:y:2011:i:3:p:504-521
    DOI: j.1467-9361.2011.00623.x
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    File URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10.1111/j.1467-9361.2011.00623.x
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Badeeb, Ramez Abubakr & Lean, Hooi Hooi & Clark, Jeremy, 2017. "The evolution of the natural resource curse thesis: A critical literature survey," Resources Policy, Elsevier, vol. 51(C), pages 123-134.
    2. repec:eee:eneeco:v:70:y:2018:i:c:p:170-178 is not listed on IDEAS
    3. Horváth, Roman & Zeynalov, Ayaz, 2016. "Natural resources, manufacturing and institutions in post-Soviet countries," Resources Policy, Elsevier, vol. 50(C), pages 141-148.
    4. Gvozdeva, Margarita & Kazakova, M.V. & Kiblitskaya, T.R. & Lyubimov, I.L. & Nesterova, K.V., 2016. "Various Aspects of Natural Resource Wealth Effect on Economic Growth," Working Papers 2045, Russian Presidential Academy of National Economy and Public Administration.
    5. Krisztina Kis-Katos & Günther G. Schulze, 2013. "Corruption in Southeast Asia: a survey of recent research," Asian-Pacific Economic Literature, Asia Pacific School of Economics and Government, The Australian National University, vol. 27(1), pages 79-109, May.
    6. Carmignani, Fabrizio, 2013. "Development outcomes, resource abundance, and the transmission through inequality," Resource and Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 35(3), pages 412-428.
    7. Nolazco Cama, Jose Luis & Bravo-Ortega, Claudio, 2015. "Instituciones, Recursos Naturales Y Sus Efectos En El Crecimiento Economico: Un Sistema De Ecuaciones Simultáneas En Panel De Datos
      [Institutions, Natural Resources And Its Impact On Economic Growt
      ," MPRA Paper 74421, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    8. Thomas Goda & Alejandro Torres, 2013. "Tasa de cambio real y recomposición sectorial en Colombia," DOCUMENTOS DE TRABAJO CIEF 010936, UNIVERSIDAD EAFIT.
    9. Fabrizio Carmignani & Abdur Chowdhury, 2012. "The Geographical Dimension of the Development Effects of Natural Resources," Environmental & Resource Economics, Springer;European Association of Environmental and Resource Economists, vol. 52(4), pages 479-498, August.
    10. Njimanted, Godfrey Forgha & Nkwetta Ajong Aquilas, 2015. "The Impact of Timber Exports on Economic Growth in Cameroon: An Econometric Investigation," Asian Journal of Economic Modelling, Asian Economic and Social Society, vol. 3(3), pages 46-60, September.
    11. Iacono, Roberto, 2016. "No blessing, no curse? On the benefits of being a resource-rich southern region of Italy," Research in Economics, Elsevier, vol. 70(2), pages 346-359.
    12. Mulligan, Casey B. & Tsui, Kevin K., 2015. "Political entry, public policies, and the economy," Research in Economics, Elsevier, vol. 69(3), pages 377-397.
    13. Jing Vivian Zhan, 2017. "Do Natural Resources Breed Corruption? Evidence from China," Environmental & Resource Economics, Springer;European Association of Environmental and Resource Economists, vol. 66(2), pages 237-259, February.
    14. James, Alexander, 2016. "The long-run vanity of Prudhoe Bay," Resources Policy, Elsevier, vol. 50(C), pages 270-275.
    15. Arsham Reisinezhad, 2018. "Economic Growth and Income Inequality in Resource Countries: Theory and Evidence," PSE Working Papers halshs-01707976, HAL.
    16. 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.
    17. Ouoba, Youmanli, 2016. "Natural resources: Funds and economic performance of resource-rich countries," Resources Policy, Elsevier, vol. 50(C), pages 108-116.
    18. 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.

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • C21 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Single Equation Models; Single Variables - - - Cross-Sectional Models; Spatial Models; Treatment Effect Models
    • C82 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Data Collection and Data Estimation Methodology; Computer Programs - - - Methodology for Collecting, Estimating, and Organizing Macroeconomic Data; Data Access
    • O11 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - Macroeconomic Analyses of Economic Development
    • O41 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Growth and Aggregate Productivity - - - One, Two, and Multisector Growth Models
    • Q30 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Nonrenewable Resources and Conservation - - - General

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