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Agricultural Productivity Growth, Efficiency Change and Technical Progress in Latin America and the Caribbean

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  • Ludena, Carlos E.

Abstract

This paper analyses total factor productivity growth in agriculture and its subsectors in Latin America and the Caribbean between 1961 and 2007. To estimate productivity growth we use the Malmquist index, which is a non-parametric methodology that uses data envelopment analysis (DEA) methods. The results show that among developing regions, Latin America and the Caribbean shows the highest agricultural productivity growth, growing at an average rate of 1.9 percent, relative to a world average of 1.7 percent. The higher growth within the region has occurred in the last two decades, especially due to improvements in efficiency and the introduction of new technologies. This result denotes convergence of the region to productivity levels of developed countries such as the United States. Country level results within the region are very heterogeneous. However, land abundant countries such as Argentina, Chile and Colombia consistently outperform land constrained countries such as Central American and Caribbean countries (except for Costa Rica). Within agriculture, crops and non-ruminant sectors have shown the strongest growth between 1961 an 2001 with average growth rates of 0.8 and 2 percent, respectively. Ruminant production has performed the worst with 0.1 percent average growth. We further analyze the cases of Brazil and Cuba to show how policies and external shocks can influence agricultural productivity. These case studies show that policies that do not discriminate the agricultural sectors and that remove price and production distortions may help improve productivity growth in agriculture.

Suggested Citation

  • Ludena, Carlos E., 2012. "Agricultural Productivity Growth, Efficiency Change and Technical Progress in Latin America and the Caribbean," 2012 Conference, August 18-24, 2012, Foz do Iguacu, Brazil 126850, International Association of Agricultural Economists.
  • Handle: RePEc:ags:iaae12:126850
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    Cited by:

    1. Enrique Gilles & Javier Deaza & Alejandro Vivas, 2016. "Productivity measurements for three countries of the Pacific Alliance and South Korea, 2008-2012," DOCUMENTOS DE TRABAJO EAN 015236, UNIVERSIDAD EAN.
    2. Jackeline Velazco & Vicente Pinilla, 2017. "Development models, agricultural policies, and agricultural growth: Peru, 1950-2010," Documentos de Trabajo de la Sociedad Española de Historia Agraria 1704, Sociedad Española de Historia Agraria.
    3. Karel Janda & Van Quang Tran & Pavel Zetek, 2015. "Faktory ovlivňující zapojení žen v mikrofinancích
      [The Factors Influencing the Participation of Women in Microfinance]
      ," Politická ekonomie, University of Economics, Prague, vol. 2015(3), pages 363-381.
    4. Javier DEAZA & Enrique GILLES & Alejandro VIVAS, 2016. "Productivity Measurements For South Korea And Three Countries Of The Pacific Alliance: Colombia, Chile And Mexico, 2008-2012," Applied Econometrics and International Development, Euro-American Association of Economic Development, vol. 16(2), pages 75-85.
    5. Steven M. Helfand & Marcelo M. Magalha¿es & Nicholas E. Rada, 2015. "Brazil's Agricultural Total Factor Productivity Growth by Farm Size," IDB Publications (Working Papers) 7232, Inter-American Development Bank.
    6. repec:spr:ssefpa:v:9:y:2017:i:6:d:10.1007_s12571-017-0682-2 is not listed on IDEAS
    7. Néstor A. Le Clech & Carmen Fillat Castejón, 2017. "Productivity, efficiency and technical change in world agriculture: a färe-primont index approach," Documentos de Trabajo dt2017-09, Facultad de Ciencias Económicas y Empresariales, Universidad de Zaragoza.
    8. Blanco Orozco, Napoleón Vicente & Zuniga Gonzalez, Carlos Alberto, 2013. "Productivity Analysis in Power Generation Plants Connected to the National Grid: A New Case of Bio Economy in Nicaragua," MPRA Paper 49356, University Library of Munich, Germany, revised 25 Feb 2013.
    9. Trindade, Federico J., 2012. "Is there a Slowdown in Agricultural Productivity Growth in South America?," 2012 Conference, August 18-24, 2012, Foz do Iguacu, Brazil 126915, International Association of Agricultural Economists.
    10. Lachaud, Michee & Bravo-Ureta, Boris & Ludena, Carlos, 2015. "Agricultural Productivity Growth in Latin America and the Caribbean (LAC): An analysis of Climatic Effects, Convergence, and Catch-up," 2015 Conference, August 9-14, 2015, Milan, Italy 211721, International Association of Agricultural Economists.
    11. Ligia Alba Melo-Becerra & Antonio José Orozco-Gallo, 2015. "Eficiencia técnica de los hogares con producción agropecuaria en Colombia," DOCUMENTOS DE TRABAJO SOBRE ECONOMÍA REGIONAL Y URBANA 013903, BANCO DE LA REPÚBLICA - ECONOMÍA REGIONAL.
    12. Miguel Martín-Retortillo & Vicente Pinilla & Jackeline Velazco & Henry Willebald, 2016. "The dynamics of latin american agricultural production growth, 1950-2008," Documentos de Trabajo (DT-AEHE) 1610, Asociacion Espa–ola de Historia Economica.
    13. Lachaud, Michee Arnold & Bravo-Ureta, Boris E. & Ludena, Carlos E., 2015. "Agricultural productivity growth in Latin America and the Caribbean and other world regions: An analysis of climatic effects, convergence and catch-up," Working Papers 40, University of Connecticut, Department of Agricultural and Resource Economics, Charles J. Zwick Center for Food and Resource Policy.
    14. Helfand, Steven M. & Magalhaes, Marcelo M. & Rada, Nicholas E., 2015. "Brazil's Agricultural Total Factor Productivity Growth by Farm Size," 2015 AAEA & WAEA Joint Annual Meeting, July 26-28, San Francisco, California 204875, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association;Western Agricultural Economics Association.

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    Keywords

    Total factor productivity; agriculture; crops; livestock; Latin America and the Caribbean; Malmquist Index; Agricultural and Food Policy; International Development; O13; O47; O54;

    JEL classification:

    • O13 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - Agriculture; Natural Resources; Environment; Other Primary Products
    • O47 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Growth and Aggregate Productivity - - - Empirical Studies of Economic Growth; Aggregate Productivity; Cross-Country Output Convergence
    • O54 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economywide Country Studies - - - Latin America; Caribbean

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