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The Effects Of Nafta And Domestic Reforms In The Agriculture Of Mexico: Predictions And Facts


  • Antonio YUNEZ NAUDE

    (PRECESAM, El Colegio de Mexico)

  • J. Edward TAYLOR

    (Department of Agricultural and Resource Economics, University of California-Davis)


We aim to study how economic policy reforms of the last 15 years have affected the agriculture of Mexico, taking into consideration the dual character of Mexican agricultural production. We will describe NAFTA and domestic reforms and then, taking an econometric approach, we will evaluate their predicted outcomes. We further consider policy shocks to rural households engaged in agriculture by applying a disaggregated rural economy-wide model (DREM) to simulated policy changes. Our analysis shows that NAFTA and Mexico's domestic reforms have not had the expected effects. We find that, among Mexico's major new post-reform agricultural policies, most have contributed to isolating large commercial producers of staples from foreign competition. As for rural subsistence households producing maize (the basic staple of the population of Mexico), our DREM demonstrates that lower maize prices could provoke more production of grain. The main conclusion that can be drawn from the Mexican experience is that economic liberalization results neither in market access, specialization and a more efficient use of scarce resources, nor in the development of agriculture.

Suggested Citation

  • Antonio YUNEZ NAUDE & J. Edward TAYLOR, 2006. "The Effects Of Nafta And Domestic Reforms In The Agriculture Of Mexico: Predictions And Facts," Region et Developpement, Region et Developpement, LEAD, Universite du Sud - Toulon Var, vol. 23, pages 161-186.
  • Handle: RePEc:tou:journl:v:23:y:2006:p:161-186

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Antonio Yunez--Naude, 2003. "The Dismantling of CONASUPO, a Mexican State Trader in Agriculture," The World Economy, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 26(1), pages 97-122, January.
    2. Antonio Yunez-Naude & Fernando Barceinas Paredes, 2004. "The Agriculture of Mexico After Ten Years of Nafta Implementation," Working Papers Central Bank of Chile 277, Central Bank of Chile.
    3. de Janvry, Alain & Fafchamps, Marcel & Sadoulet, Elisabeth, 1991. "Peasant Household Behaviour with Missing Markets: Some Paradoxes Explained," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 101(409), pages 1400-1417, November.
    4. Santiago Levy & Sweder van Wijnbergen, 1992. "Mexican Agriculture in the Free Trade Agreement: Transition Problems in Economic Reform," OECD Development Centre Working Papers 63, OECD Publishing.
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    Cited by:

    1. Sytske F. Groenewald & Marrit M. Van Den Berg, 2012. "Smallholder Livelihood Adaptation in the Context of Neoliberal Policy Reforms: A Case of Maize Farmers in Southern Veracruz, Mexico," Journal of Development Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 48(3), pages 429-444, April.

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    JEL classification:

    • D1 - Microeconomics - - Household Behavior
    • Q58 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Environmental Economics - - - Environmental Economics: Government Policy
    • O5 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economywide Country Studies


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