The Natural Resource Curse: An Analysis of the Dutch Case based on Sectoral Economies of Scale
This paper analyzes the curse of natural resources from a new approach, taking as reference object the economy of the Netherlands. It is shown how the deindustrialization process of an economy suffers as a result of the natural resource sector development, and how it may cause lower growth rates when the industrial sector has certain features. As a starting point, we proceed with an estimation of production functions for different sectors of the economy in order to quantify the economies of scale in each of them. Subsequently, by means of a constrained optimization model, a boom in the natural resource sector is simulated and the results obtained under different scenarios are discussed by comparing them with a base scenario. The results obtained suggest that the curse of natural resources can occur if the expansion of the natural resource sector is high, in this case being the lower economic growth rate. This curse could be mitigated by expanding the areas of high productivity in non-tradable goods. It is also noted that the higher the labour market rigidity the result it will be a lower economic growth rate, and a combination of these rigidities with a pronounced expansion in the resource sector could lead to further reductions in economic growth rates.
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