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Bilateralism and multilateralism in official development assistance policies

  • Jean-Claude Berthélemy

    ()

    (TEAM)

I examine in detail the motives of bilateral aid allocation decisions, as they are revealed by data on bilateral aid commitments. I identify both self-interest and recipient needs and merits motives in aid allocation. Self-interest motives are related to economic and political ties between donors and recipients. Such variables can be used to define a «bilateralism effect» in aid allocation decisions. Unsurprisingly, aid allocation net of the bilateralism effect is highly correlated with multilateral aid pattern. Perhaps more surprisingly, the bilateralism effect is adverse to the Sub-Saharan African region, in spite of its strong post-colonial ties with European donors, because trade linkages play actually a greater role than political ties. A consequence of the major role played by trade linkages is that the bilateralism effect is not necessarily adverse to aid selectivity, given that major trading partners are also on average open and relatively well performing economies.

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File URL: ftp://mse.univ-paris1.fr/pub/mse/cahiers2004/Bla04104.pdf
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Paper provided by Université Panthéon-Sorbonne (Paris 1) in its series Cahiers de la Maison des Sciences Economiques with number bla04104.

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Length: 26 pages
Date of creation: Oct 2004
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:mse:wpsorb:bla04104
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  1. Dudley, Leonard & Montmarquette, Claude, 1976. "A Model of the Supply of Bilateral Foreign Aid," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 66(1), pages 132-42, March.
  2. Alesina, Alberto & Dollar, David, 2000. " Who Gives Foreign Aid to Whom and Why?," Journal of Economic Growth, Springer, vol. 5(1), pages 33-63, March.
  3. Maizels, Alfred & Nissanke, Machiko K., 1984. "Motivations for aid to developing countries," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 12(9), pages 879-900, September.
  4. Finn Tarp & Christian F. Bach & Henrik Hansen & Søren Baunsgaard, 1998. "Danish Aid Policy: Theory and Empirical Evidence," Discussion Papers 98-06, University of Copenhagen. Department of Economics.
  5. Easterly, william, 2001. "Growth implosions, debt explosions, and my Aunt Marilyn : do growth slowdowns cause public debt crises?," Policy Research Working Paper Series 2531, The World Bank.
  6. Sajal Lahiri & Pascalis Raimondos-Møller, 1999. "Lobbying by Ethnic Groups and Aid Allocation," EPRU Working Paper Series 99-05, Economic Policy Research Unit (EPRU), University of Copenhagen. Department of Economics, revised Oct 2003.
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