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Projecting the World Economy to 2050: Agriculture in the Economy-wide GTAP Model


  • Ernesto Valenzuela

    () (Centre for International Economic Studies, School of Economics, University of Adelaide)

  • Kym Anderson

    () (Centre for International Economic Studies, School of Economics, University of Adelaide)


Recent analyses of the possible adverse effects of climate change and policy responses on agriculture and mining have raised food and energy security concerns in both rich and poorer countries. Analysing possible effects of ways of dealing with those concerns requires first projecting the world economy forward to 2050 and beyond. This paper provides as background a set of projections to 2050, drawing on the global economy-wide model known as GTAP. The projection is calibrated to ensure the real prices of primary products remain broadly unchanged from their levels in the model's base year of 2004. Alternative scenarios could have been calibrated to show (a) rising real prices for both food and energy raw materials (consistent with forecasts of several international agencies), by assuming some slowdown in productivity growth in primary sectors, or (b) declining real prices for agricultural and mining products (consistent with the experience of most of the 20th century), by assuming somewhat faster productivity growth in primary sectors. The set of projections shown for 2030 and 2050 is thus an intermediate set. The key impacts on international prices, agricultural self-sufficiency, sectoral shares of national economies and national shares of the global economy are highlighted. The paper concludes with implications for R&D spending and research policy.

Suggested Citation

  • Ernesto Valenzuela & Kym Anderson, 2011. "Projecting the World Economy to 2050: Agriculture in the Economy-wide GTAP Model," Centre for International Economic Studies Working Papers 2011-01, University of Adelaide, Centre for International Economic Studies.
  • Handle: RePEc:adl:cieswp:2011-01

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Anderson, Kym & Kurzweil, Marianne & Martin, Will & Sandri, Damiano & Valenzuela, Ernesto, 2008. "Measuring distortions to agricultural incentives, revisited," World Trade Review, Cambridge University Press, vol. 7(04), pages 675-704, October.
    2. Kym Anderson, 2009. "Distorted Agricultural Incentives and Economic Development: Asia's Experience," The World Economy, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 32(3), pages 351-384, March.
    3. Beddow, Jason M. & Pardey, Philip G. & Alston, Julian M., 2009. "The Shifting Global Patterns of Agricultural Productivity," Choices, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 24(4).
    4. Hertel, Thomas & Hummels, David & Ivanic, Maros & Keeney, Roman, 2007. "How confident can we be of CGE-based assessments of Free Trade Agreements?," Economic Modelling, Elsevier, vol. 24(4), pages 611-635, July.
    5. Hertel, Thomas, 1997. "Global Trade Analysis: Modeling and applications," GTAP Books, Center for Global Trade Analysis, Department of Agricultural Economics, Purdue University, number 7685.
    6. Martin, Will & Mitra, Devashish, 2001. "Productivity Growth and Convergence in Agriculture versus Manufacturing," Economic Development and Cultural Change, University of Chicago Press, vol. 49(2), pages 403-422, January.
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    More about this item


    Global computable general equilibrium model projections; crop and labour productivity growth;

    JEL classification:

    • D58 - Microeconomics - - General Equilibrium and Disequilibrium - - - Computable and Other Applied General Equilibrium Models
    • F17 - International Economics - - Trade - - - Trade Forecasting and Simulation
    • Q17 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Agriculture - - - Agriculture in International Trade
    • Q24 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Renewable Resources and Conservation - - - Land
    • Q54 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Environmental Economics - - - Climate; Natural Disasters and their Management; Global Warming


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