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An Assessment of the Impact of Wheat Market Liberalization in Egypt; A Multi-Market Model Approach

  • Gamal M. Siam

    (Agricultural and Development Economics Division, Food and Agriculture Organization)

  • André Croppenstedt

    (Agricultural and Development Economics Division, Food and Agriculture Organization)

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    Wheat is central to the government of Egypt’s food security policy which is influenced by a concern for overdependence on imports and the need to provide subsidized bread for the poor. This paper uses a multi-market approach to assess the impact of complete wheat market liberalization, an international wheat price increase, the value of strategic stocks and the impact of investment to generate higher yields and lower transaction costs for wheat producers. Results show that wheat market liberalization implies very substantial costs for consumers and producers. The estimated income losses that these groups suffer would appear to be below the current total subsidy costs and hence a cash transfer program would, in principle, be feasible. The results show that wheat price movements impact strongly on the supply and/or demand side in particular of berseem, rice, maize, cotton and livestock which has significant implications for their net imports as well as input use. Results indicate that strategic stocks can be useful to neutralize the impact of a wheat price spike. Increasing wheat yields and reducing transportation boosts wheat self-sufficiency but does not dampen the impact of removing the wheat subsidy system on household’s welfare.

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    Paper provided by Agricultural and Development Economics Division of the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO - ESA) in its series Working Papers with number 07-15.

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    Length: 29 pages
    Date of creation: 2007
    Date of revision:
    Handle: RePEc:fao:wpaper:0715
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    1. Kherallah, Mylene & Lofgren, Hans & Gruhn, Peter & Reeder, Meyra M., 2000. "Wheat policy reform in Egypt: adjustment of local markets and options for future reforms," Research reports 115, International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI).
    2. Nicholas Minot & Francesco Goletti, 1998. "Export Liberalization and Household Welfare: The Case of Rice in Vietnam," American Journal of Agricultural Economics, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 80(4), pages 738-749.
    3. Dorosh, Paul & del Ninno, Carlo & Sahn, David E., 1995. "Poverty alleviation in Mozambique: a multi-market analysis of the role of food aid," Agricultural Economics, Blackwell, vol. 13(2), pages 89-99, November.
    4. Srinivasan, P. V. & Jha, Shikha, 2001. "Liberalized trade and domestic price stability. The case of rice and wheat in India," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 65(2), pages 417-441, August.
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