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The role of fiscal transfers for regional economic convergence in Europe

  • Checherita-Westphal, Cristina
  • Nickel, Christiane
  • Rother, Philipp

This paper provides evidence on the role of net fiscal transfers to households and EU structural funds for per-capita output convergence across a large sample of European regions during the period 1995-2005. We find that net fiscal transfers, while achieving regional redistribution, seem to impede output growth and promote an “immiserising convergence”: output growth rates in poor receiving regions decline by less than in rich paying regions. EU structural and cohesion funds spent during 1994-1999 had a positive, but slight, impact on future economic growth, mainly through the human development component. JEL Classification: E62, R11, R23

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Paper provided by European Central Bank in its series Working Paper Series with number 1029.

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Date of creation: Mar 2009
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Handle: RePEc:ecb:ecbwps:20091029
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  1. Rebelo, Sergio, 1991. "Long-Run Policy Analysis and Long-Run Growth," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 99(3), pages 500-521, June.
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  3. Xavier Sala-i-Martin, 1995. "The classical approach to convergence analysis," Economics Working Papers 117, Department of Economics and Business, Universitat Pompeu Fabra.
  4. Gernot Doppelhofer & Ronald I. Miller & Xavier Sala-i-Martin, 2000. "Determinants of Long-Term Growth: A Bayesian Averaging of Classical Estimates (BACE) Approach," NBER Working Papers 7750, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  5. Serge Coulombe & Frank C. Lee, 1995. "Convergence across Canadian Provinces, 1961 to 1991," Canadian Journal of Economics, Canadian Economics Association, vol. 28(4a), pages 886-98, November.
  6. Robert J. Barro, 1999. "Inequality, Growth, and Investment," NBER Working Papers 7038, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  7. Phillip Swagel & Steven Vincent Dunaway & Martin David Kaufman, 2003. "Regional Convergence and the Role of Federal Transfers in Canada," IMF Working Papers 03/97, International Monetary Fund.
  8. Johnson, Paul A., 2000. "A nonparametric analysis of income convergence across the US states," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 69(2), pages 219-223, November.
  9. Robert J. Barro & Xavier Sala-i-Martin, 1990. "Economic Growth and Convergence across The United States," NBER Working Papers 3419, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  10. Islam, Nazrul, 1995. "Growth Empirics: A Panel Data Approach," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 110(4), pages 1127-70, November.
  11. Manfred Fischer & Peter Stumpner, 2008. "Income distribution dynamics and cross-region convergence in Europe," Journal of Geographical Systems, Springer, vol. 10(2), pages 109-139, June.
  12. Shioji, Etsuro, 2001. " Public Capital and Economic Growth: A Convergence Approach," Journal of Economic Growth, Springer, vol. 6(3), pages 205-27, September.
  13. Quah, Danny T., 1996. "Empirics for economic growth and convergence," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 40(6), pages 1353-1375, June.
  14. Sergio Rey & Brett Montouri, 1999. "US Regional Income Convergence: A Spatial Econometric Perspective," Regional Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 33(2), pages 143-156.
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