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Explaining African economic performance

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  • Paul Collier
  • Jan Willem Gunning

Abstract

Africa has had slow growth and a massive exodus of capital. In many respects it has been the most capital-hostile region. We review and interpret the aggregate-level and microeconomic literatures to identify the key explanations for this performance. There is a reasonable correspondence of the two sets of evidence, pointing to four factors as being important. These are a lack of openness to international trade; a high-risk environment; a low level of social capital; and poor infrastructure. These problems are to a substantial extent attributable to government behavior, and the paper includes a review of the political economy literature addressing that behavior.
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Suggested Citation

  • Paul Collier & Jan Willem Gunning, 1997. "Explaining African economic performance," CSAE Working Paper Series 1997-02.2, Centre for the Study of African Economies, University of Oxford.
  • Handle: RePEc:csa:wpaper:1997-02.2
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    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • O55 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economywide Country Studies - - - Africa
    • O57 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economywide Country Studies - - - Comparative Studies of Countries

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