How Successful Are Government Interventions In Food Markets? Insights From The Philippine Rice Market
We investigate the Philippine government's price stabilization policy for rice. Seemingly Unrelated Regressions are used to examine the effectiveness of the program at regional and national levels over a 21-year period (January 1983 to December 2003). Results of the regional analysis indicate some NFA-induced spatial and temporal differences in terms of producer prices. The NFA successfully increased producer prices in 5 of 13 regions through stock accumulation and paddy rice purchase at floor prices. NFA stock releases do not correlate strongly with retail prices at the national level, although results from the regional model indicate that NFA stock releases reduced retail prices in five regions, leading to perceptible spatial and temporal differences between regions. Although the NFA support price appears to have been moderately successful in increasing producer prices at a national level, on average, the support price led to an increase in consumer prices in ten regions and contributed little to price stabilization. Overall, therefore, our results indicate very limited success on the part of the NFA to achieve its major objectives at either regional or national level. We suggest the NFA should concentrate its resources in the poorest areas of the country, where it might exert greater and more useful influence in smaller and locally thin rice markets.
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