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Growth and Demography in Turkey: Economic History vs. Pro-Natalist Rhetoric

  • Attar, M. Aykut

This paper projects the effects of exogenous fertility changes in Turkey on the age structure of population and the standards of living using a semi-reduced-form model of economic growth and demographic change. Both the technological progress and the fertility rate are endogenous. The calibrated version of the model delivers three important results: First, technological progress will be the major source of economic growth in Turkey in the upcoming decades. Second, even with a non-declining saving rate, the population aging will result in a growth slowdown since technological progress is not fast enough in Turkey. Third, even under an increasing rate of technological progress, a permanent upward shift in fertility levels would imply, relative to the benchmark, a significantly lower level of output per capita, a remarkably higher level of dependent population, and a persistently lower share of the working-age population for many decades. These results suggest that the priority of policy-makers in Turkey should be technological progress. The pro-natalist rhetoric, even if it proves to be strong enough to persuade the people of Turkey to have more children in the near future, does not have any economic significance.

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Paper provided by University Library of Munich, Germany in its series MPRA Paper with number 47275.

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Date of creation: 24 May 2013
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Handle: RePEc:pra:mprapa:47275
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  1. Prettner, Klaus & Bloom, David E. & Strulik, Holger, 2013. "Declining fertility and economic well-being: Do education and health ride to the rescue?," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 22(C), pages 70-79.
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  18. repec:gdm:wpaper:5710 is not listed on IDEAS
  19. Altug, Sumru & Filiztekin, Alpay & Pamuk, Şevket, 2008. "Sources of long-term economic growth for Turkey, 1880–2005," European Review of Economic History, Cambridge University Press, vol. 12(03), pages 393-430, December.
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