IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/p/ags/aaea13/149259.html
   My bibliography  Save this paper

What are the effects of input subsidy programs on equilibrium maize prices? Evidence from Malawi and Zambia

Author

Listed:
  • Ricker-Gilbert, Jacob E.
  • Mason, Nicole M.
  • Jayne, Thomas S.
  • Darko, Francis Addeah
  • Tembo, Solomon

Abstract

An important hypothesized benefit of large-scale input subsidy programs in Africa is that by raising maize production, the subsidies should put downward pressure on retail maize prices to the benefit of urban consumers and the rural poor who tend to be net food buyers. To inform debates related to this rationale for input subsidies, this study estimates the effects of fertilizer subsidies on retail maize prices in Malawi and Zambia using market or district-level panel data covering the 2000/01 to 2011/12 maize marketing years. Results indicate that roughly doubling the size of Malawi’s subsidy program (i.e., increasing the amount of subsidized fertilizer distributed to each district by 4,000 metric tons per year) reduces maize prices by 1.2% to 1.6% on average. In Zambia, roughly doubling the scale of the country’s subsidy program (i.e., increasing the amount of subsidized fertilizer distributed to each district by 1,000 metric tons per year) reduces maize prices by 1.8% to 2.4% on average. The results are robust across countries and model specifications, and indicate that the fertilizer subsidy programs in Malawi and Zambia have had a minimal effect on reducing retail maize prices.

Suggested Citation

  • Ricker-Gilbert, Jacob E. & Mason, Nicole M. & Jayne, Thomas S. & Darko, Francis Addeah & Tembo, Solomon, 2013. "What are the effects of input subsidy programs on equilibrium maize prices? Evidence from Malawi and Zambia," 2013 Annual Meeting, August 4-6, 2013, Washington, D.C. 149259, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association.
  • Handle: RePEc:ags:aaea13:149259
    DOI: 10.22004/ag.econ.149259
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: http://ageconsearch.umn.edu/record/149259/files/maize_price_AAEA_final_submit.pdf
    Download Restriction: no

    Other versions of this item:

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Nicole M. Mason & Robert J. Myers, 2013. "The effects of the Food Reserve Agency on maize market prices in Zambia," Agricultural Economics, International Association of Agricultural Economists, vol. 44(2), pages 203-216, March.
    2. Jayne, Thomas S. & Sitko, Nicholas J. & Ricker-Gilbert, Jacob & Mangisoni, Julius H., 2010. "Malawi’s Maize Marketing System," Food Security Collaborative Working Papers 62162, Michigan State University, Department of Agricultural, Food, and Resource Economics.
    3. Ravallion, Martin, 2000. "Prices, wages and poverty in rural India: what lessons do the time series data hold for policy?," Food Policy, Elsevier, vol. 25(3), pages 351-364, June.
    4. Emílio Tostão & B. Wade Brorsen, 2005. "Spatial price efficiency in Mozambique's post‐reform maize markets," Agricultural Economics, International Association of Agricultural Economists, vol. 33(2), pages 205-214, September.
    5. Ricker-Gilbert, Jacob & Jayne, Thomas S., 2011. "What are the Enduring Effects of Fertilizer Subsidy Programs on Recipient Farm Households? Evidence from Malawi," Staff Paper Series 109593, Michigan State University, Department of Agricultural, Food, and Resource Economics.
    6. Mason, Nicole M. & Burke, William J. & Shipekesa, Arthur M. & Jayne, Thomas S., 2011. "The 2011 Surplus in Smallholder Maize Production in Zambia: Drivers, Beneficiaries, & Implications for Agricultural & Poverty Reduction Policies," Food Security Collaborative Working Papers 118477, Michigan State University, Department of Agricultural, Food, and Resource Economics.
    7. Nkonde, Chewe & Mason, Nicole M. & Sitko, Nicholas J. & Jayne, Thomas S., 2011. "Who Gained and Who Lost from Zambia's 2010 Maize Marketing Policies?," Food Security Collaborative Working Papers 99610, Michigan State University, Department of Agricultural, Food, and Resource Economics.
    8. Govereh, Jones & Jayne, Thomas S. & Chapoto, Antony, 2008. "Assessment of Alternative Maize Trade and Market Policy Interventions in Zambia," Food Security Collaborative Working Papers 54492, Michigan State University, Department of Agricultural, Food, and Resource Economics.
    9. Manuel Arellano & Stephen Bond, 1991. "Some Tests of Specification for Panel Data: Monte Carlo Evidence and an Application to Employment Equations," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 58(2), pages 277-297.
    10. Maros Ivanic & Will Martin, 2008. "Implications of higher global food prices for poverty in low‐income countries1," Agricultural Economics, International Association of Agricultural Economists, vol. 39(s1), pages 405-416, November.
    11. Chibwana, Christopher & Shively, Gerald & Fisher, Monica & Jumbe, Charles & Masters, William A., 2014. "Measuring the impacts of Malawi’s farm input subsidy programme," African Journal of Agricultural and Resource Economics, African Association of Agricultural Economists, vol. 9(2), pages 1-16, April.
    12. Mason, Nicole M. & Jayne, Thomas S. & Myers, Robert J., 2012. "Smallholder Behavioral Responses to Marketing Board Activities in a Dual Channel Marketing System: The Case of Maize in Zambia," 2012 Conference, August 18-24, 2012, Foz do Iguacu, Brazil 126927, International Association of Agricultural Economists.
    13. Nicole M. Mason & T.S. Jayne & Rhoda Mofya-Mukuka, 2013. "Zambia's input subsidy programs," Agricultural Economics, International Association of Agricultural Economists, vol. 44(6), pages 613-628, November.
    14. Burke, William J. & Jayne, Thomas S. & Chapoto, Antony, 2010. "Factors Contributing to Zambia’s 2010 Maize Bumper Harvest," Food Security Collaborative Policy Briefs 97034, Michigan State University, Department of Agricultural, Food, and Resource Economics.
    15. Jayne, T. S. & Jones, Stephen, 1997. "Food marketing and pricing policy in Eastern and Southern Africa: A survey," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 25(9), pages 1505-1527, September.
    16. Shahidur Rashid, 2004. "Spatial Integration of Maize Markets in Post-liberalised Uganda," Journal of African Economies, Centre for the Study of African Economies (CSAE), vol. 13(1), pages 102-133, March.
    17. Ravallion, Martin, 1990. "Rural Welfare Effects of Food Price Changes under Induced Wage Responses: Theory and Evidence for Bangladesh," Oxford Economic Papers, Oxford University Press, vol. 42(3), pages 574-585, July.
    18. Van Campenhout, Bjorn, 2007. "Modelling trends in food market integration: Method and an application to Tanzanian maize markets," Food Policy, Elsevier, vol. 32(1), pages 112-127, February.
    19. Robert J. Myers & T.S. Jayne, 2012. "Multiple-Regime Spatial Price Transmission with an Application to Maize Markets in Southern Africa," American Journal of Agricultural Economics, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 94(1), pages 174-188.
    20. Goletti, Francesco & Babu, Suresh, 1994. "Market liberalization and integration of maize markets in Malawi," Agricultural Economics, Blackwell, vol. 11(2-3), pages 311-324, December.
    21. Ivanic, Maros & Martin, Will, 2008. "Implications of higher global food prices for poverty in low-income countries," Policy Research Working Paper Series 4594, The World Bank.
    22. Jacob Ricker-Gilbert & Thomas S. Jayne & Ephraim Chirwa, 2010. "Subsidies and Crowding Out: A Double-Hurdle Model of Fertilizer Demand in Malawi," American Journal of Agricultural Economics, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 93(1), pages 26-42.
    23. Chapoto, Antony, 2012. "The Political Economy of Food Price Policy: The Case of Zambia," WIDER Working Paper Series 100, World Institute for Development Economic Research (UNU-WIDER).
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Demand and Price Analysis; Food Security and Poverty; International Development; Production Economics;

    JEL classification:

    • E65 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Macroeconomic Policy, Macroeconomic Aspects of Public Finance, and General Outlook - - - Studies of Particular Policy Episodes
    • G38 - Financial Economics - - Corporate Finance and Governance - - - Government Policy and Regulation
    • O13 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - Agriculture; Natural Resources; Environment; Other Primary Products
    • O20 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Development Planning and Policy - - - General
    • Q18 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Agriculture - - - Agricultural Policy; Food Policy

    NEP fields

    This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    Corrections

    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:ags:aaea13:149259. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (AgEcon Search). General contact details of provider: http://edirc.repec.org/data/aaeaaea.html .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If CitEc recognized a reference but did not link an item in RePEc to it, you can help with this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.