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Drugs and Violence in Afghanistan: A Panel VAR with Unobserved Common Factor Analysis

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  • Bove, Vincenzo

    () (Department of Government, University of Essex)

  • Elia, Leandro

    () (Department of Economics and Statistics, Università della Calabria)

Abstract

This paper addresses the relationship between the level of violence and the opium market in Afghanistan’s provinces. We first provide an overview of the nature and extent of the Afghan drug trafficking. This is followed by a VAR analysis of the nexus opium-insurgency activities using monthly time-series data on opium prices and the number of security incidents for 15 Afghan provinces over the period 2004-2009. We use a multifactor error structure, the Common Correlated Effect (CCE), to include unobservable common factors; Impulse Response functions to describe the time path of the dependent variables in response to shocks; and the Mean Group Estimator to summarize our results across the provinces. Results suggest a conflict-induced reduction in opium prices, while the reverse opium-violence mechanism is mostly negligible. Moreover, unobservable common factors are the main drivers of opium prices and violence.

Suggested Citation

  • Bove, Vincenzo & Elia, Leandro, 2011. "Drugs and Violence in Afghanistan: A Panel VAR with Unobserved Common Factor Analysis," NEPS Working Papers 2/2011, Network of European Peace Scientists.
  • Handle: RePEc:ris:nepswp:2011_002
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Georges Bresson & Badi H. Baltagi & Alain Pirotte, 2007. "Panel unit root tests and spatial dependence," Journal of Applied Econometrics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 22(2), pages 339-360.
    2. Oeindrila Dube & Juan F. Vargas, 2013. "Commodity Price Shocks and Civil Conflict: Evidence from Colombia," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 80(4), pages 1384-1421.
    3. Im, Kyung So & Pesaran, M. Hashem & Shin, Yongcheol, 2003. "Testing for unit roots in heterogeneous panels," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 115(1), pages 53-74, July.
    4. Jo Thori Lind & Karl Ove Moene & Fredik Willumsen, 2014. "Opium for the Masses? Conflict-Induced Narcotics Production in Afghanistan," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 96(5), pages 949-966, December.
    5. Pesaran, M. Hashem & Smith, Ron, 1995. "Estimating long-run relationships from dynamic heterogeneous panels," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 68(1), pages 79-113, July.
    6. Markus Brückner & Antonio Ciccone, 2010. "International Commodity Prices, Growth and the Outbreak of Civil War in Sub-Saharan Africa," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 120(544), pages 519-534, May.
    7. M. Hashem Pesaran, 2007. "A simple panel unit root test in the presence of cross-section dependence," Journal of Applied Econometrics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 22(2), pages 265-312.
    8. Grossman, Herschel I, 1991. "A General Equilibrium Model of Insurrections," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 81(4), pages 912-921, September.
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    10. Edward Miguel & Shanker Satyanath & Ernest Sergenti, 2004. "Economic Shocks and Civil Conflict: An Instrumental Variables Approach," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 112(4), pages 725-753, August.
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    Cited by:

    1. Bove, Vincenzo & Gavrilova, Evelina, 2014. "Income and Livelihoods in the War in Afghanistan," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 60(C), pages 113-131.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Conflict; Opium; Afghanistan;

    JEL classification:

    • D74 - Microeconomics - - Analysis of Collective Decision-Making - - - Conflict; Conflict Resolution; Alliances; Revolutions
    • H56 - Public Economics - - National Government Expenditures and Related Policies - - - National Security and War
    • K42 - Law and Economics - - Legal Procedure, the Legal System, and Illegal Behavior - - - Illegal Behavior and the Enforcement of Law

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