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AIDS, Economic Growth and the Epidemic Trap in Africa

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  • Nicolas Couderc
  • Bruno Ventelou

Abstract

Most studies find that AIDS has a relatively weak impact on economic growth because they assume that it affects only one flow variable and only in the short term (the flow of labour available and capable of working at a time t in the economy). But AIDS also has a long-term impact on stock variables that existing models do not take into account, specifically, on both human and physical capital. Integrating these two impacts in a growth model with multiple accumulation factors reverses the findings of standard impact evaluations. A fairly wide range of epidemic effects modifies the economy's long-term growth regime, creating what we might call an epidemic or regressive “trap”. Government action should be designed in view of this risk and should intervene preferentially in favour of human capital, through health and educational spending. Finally, this model changes the cost-efficiency calculations about expanding antiretroviral therapies to a large part of the working population and indicates that such treatment is substantially more cost-efficient than initially thought.

Suggested Citation

  • Nicolas Couderc & Bruno Ventelou, 2005. "AIDS, Economic Growth and the Epidemic Trap in Africa," Oxford Development Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 33(3-4), pages 417-426.
  • Handle: RePEc:taf:oxdevs:v:33:y:2005:i:3-4:p:417-426
    DOI: 10.1080/13600810500199236
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    Cited by:

    1. Jean-Paul Moatti & Bruno Ventelou, 2009. "Économie de la santé dans les pays en développement des paradigmes en mutation," Revue économique, Presses de Sciences-Po, vol. 60(2), pages 241-256.
    2. Nicolas Couderc & Nicolas Drouhin & Bruno Ventelou, 2006. "SIDA et croissance économique : le risque d'une « trappe épidémiologique »," Revue d'économie politique, Dalloz, vol. 116(5), pages 697-715.
    3. Arshia Amiri & Ulf-g Gerdtham & Bruno Ventelou, 2012. "HIV/AIDS-GDP Nexus? Evidence from panel-data for African countries," Economics Bulletin, AccessEcon, vol. 32(1), pages 1060-1067.
    4. Shu-Chen Chang & Teng-Yu Chang, 2012. "Threshold Effects of Economic Growth on Air Pollution under Regimes of Corruption," Economics Bulletin, AccessEcon, vol. 32(1), pages 1046-1059.

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