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Are Foreign Aid and Remittances a Hedge against Food Price Shocks in Developing Countries?


  • Jean-Louis COMBES

    () (Centre d'Etudes et de Recherches sur le Développement International(CERDI))

  • Christian EBEKE




This paper measures the effects of food price shocks on both the level of household consumption per capita and the instability of the household consumption per capita growth rate in developing countries. In this vein, the paper explores the role of aid and remittance inflows in the mitigation of the effects of food price shocks in the recipient economies. Using a large sample of developing countries observed over the period 1980-2009 and mobilising dynamic panel data specifications, the econometric results yield three important findings. First, food price shocks significantly affect both the level and the instability of household consumption in highly vulnerable countries. Second, remittance and aid inflows significantly dampen the effect of food price shocks in the most vulnerable countries. Third, a lower remittance-to-GDP ratio is required in order to fully absorb the effects of food price shocks compared to the corresponding aid-to-GDP ratio.

Suggested Citation

  • Jean-Louis COMBES & Christian EBEKE & Mireille NTSAMA ETOUNDI, 2011. "Are Foreign Aid and Remittances a Hedge against Food Price Shocks in Developing Countries?," Working Papers 201121, CERDI.
  • Handle: RePEc:cdi:wpaper:1277

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Yang Dean, 2008. "Coping with Disaster: The Impact of Hurricanes on International Financial Flows, 1970-2002," The B.E. Journal of Economic Analysis & Policy, De Gruyter, vol. 8(1), pages 1-45, June.
    2. Ilene Grabel, 2009. "Remittances: Political Economy and Developmental Implications," International Journal of Political Economy, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 38(4), pages 86-106.
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    5. Sanket Mohapatra & George Joseph & Dilip Ratha, 2012. "Remittances and natural disasters: ex-post response and contribution to ex-ante preparedness," Environment, Development and Sustainability: A Multidisciplinary Approach to the Theory and Practice of Sustainable Development, Springer, vol. 14(3), pages 365-387, June.
    6. David Antonio C., 2011. "How do International Financial Flows to Developing Countries Respond to Natural Disasters?," Global Economy Journal, De Gruyter, vol. 11(4), pages 1-38, December.
    7. Erik Lueth & Marta Ruiz-Arranz, 2007. "Are workers' remittances a hedge against macroeconomic shocks? The case of Sri Lanka," Asia-Pacific Development Journal, United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP), vol. 14(1), pages 25-39, June.
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    9. Combes, Jean-Louis & Ebeke, Christian, 2011. "Remittances and Household Consumption Instability in Developing Countries," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 39(7), pages 1076-1089, July.
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    12. Dalia S Hakura & Ralph Chami & Peter J Montiel, 2009. "Remittances; An Automatic Output Stabilizer?," IMF Working Papers 09/91, International Monetary Fund.
    13. Blundell, Richard & Bond, Stephen, 1998. "Initial conditions and moment restrictions in dynamic panel data models," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 87(1), pages 115-143, August.
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    15. Bernadette Dia Kamgnia, 2011. "Political Economy of Recent Global Food Price Shocks: Gainers, Losers and Compensatory Mechanism-super- †," Journal of African Economies, Centre for the Study of African Economies (CSAE), vol. 20(suppl_1), pages -210, May.
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    Blog mentions

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    1. Aid and remittances as hedges against food price shocks
      by Economic Logician in Economic Logic on 2011-08-03 19:21:00


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    Cited by:

    1. Andrea Filippo Presbitero, 2013. "Aid and Vulnerability," Mo.Fi.R. Working Papers 88, Money and Finance Research group (Mo.Fi.R.) - Univ. Politecnica Marche - Dept. Economic and Social Sciences.
    2. Mthuli Ncube & Zuzana Brixiova, 2013. "Working Paper 188 - Remittances and their Macroeconomic Impact: Evidence from Africa," Working Paper Series 996, African Development Bank.
    3. Giulia Bettin & Andrea F. Presbitero & Nikola L. Spatafora, 2017. "Remittances and Vulnerability in Developing Countries," World Bank Economic Review, World Bank Group, vol. 31(1), pages 1-23.
    4. Supriyo De & Ergys Islamaj & Ayhan Kose & S. Reza Yousefi, 2016. "Remittances over the Business Cycle: Theory and Evidence," Koç University-TUSIAD Economic Research Forum Working Papers 1601, Koc University-TUSIAD Economic Research Forum.
    5. Badolo, Felix & Kinda, Somlanare Romuald, 2012. "Climatic shocks and food security in developing countries," MPRA Paper 43006, University Library of Munich, Germany.

    More about this item


    Household consumption; Food price shocks; Vulnerability; Aid; Remittances;

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