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The Economic Impact Of Water Pricing: A Computable General Equilibrium Analysis

  • Maria Berrittella
  • Katrin Rehdanz
  • Roberto Roson
  • Richard S.J. Tol

    ()

    (Economic and Social Research Institute, Dublin)

Water is scarce in many countries. One instrument to improve the allocation of a scarce resource is (efficient) pricing or taxation. However, water is implicitly traded on international markets, particularly through food and textiles, so that impacts of water taxes cannot be studied in isolation, but require an analysis of international trade implications. We include water as a production factor in a multi-region, multi-sector computable general equilibrium model (GTAP), to assess a series of water tax policies. We find that water taxes reduce water use, and lead to shifts in production, consumption, and international trade patterns. Countries that do not levy water taxes are nonetheless affected by other countries’ taxes. Taxes on agricultural water use drive most of the economic and welfare impacts. Reductions in water use (welfare losses) are less (more) than linear in the price of water. The results are sensitive to the assumed ability to substitute other production factors for water. A water tax on production would have different effects on water use, production and trade patterns, and the size and distribution of welfare losses than would a water tax on final consumption.

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File URL: http://www.fnu.zmaw.de/fileadmin/fnu-files/publication/working-papers/FNU96.pdf
File Function: First version, 2006
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Paper provided by Research unit Sustainability and Global Change, Hamburg University in its series Working Papers with number FNU-96.

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Length: 23 pages
Date of creation: Jan 2006
Date of revision: Jan 2006
Publication status: Published, Water Policy, 10 (3), 259-271
Handle: RePEc:sgc:wpaper:96
Contact details of provider: Postal: Bundesstrasse 55, 20146 Hamburg
Phone: +49 40 42838 6593
Fax: +49 40 42838 7009
Web page: http://www.fnu.zmaw.de/

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  1. Decaluwé, B. & Patry, A. & Savard, L., 1999. "When Water is no Longer Heaven Sent: Comparative Pricing Analysis in an AGE Model," Cahiers de recherche 9908, Université Laval - Département d'économique.
  2. Noelwah R. Netusil & Thomas R. Harris & Chang K. Seung & Jeffrey E. Englin, 2000. "Impacts of water reallocation: A combined computable general equilibrium and recreation demand model approach," The Annals of Regional Science, Springer, vol. 34(4), pages 473-487.
  3. Maria Berrittella & Katrin Rehdanz & Arjen Y. Hoekstra & Roberto Roson & Richard S.J. Tol, 2006. "The Economic Impact Of Restricted Water Supply: A Computable General Equilibrium Analysis," Working Papers FNU-93, Research unit Sustainability and Global Change, Hamburg University, revised Jul 2006.
  4. Burniaux, Jean-Marc & Truong Truong, 2002. "GTAP-E: An Energy-Environmental Version of the GTAP Model," GTAP Technical Papers 923, Center for Global Trade Analysis, Department of Agricultural Economics, Purdue University.
  5. Diao, Xinshen & Roe, Terry, 2003. "Can a water market avert the "double-whammy" of trade reform and lead to a "win-win" outcome?," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 45(3), pages 708-723, May.
  6. Dinar, Ariel & Yaron, Dan, 1992. "Adoption and abandonment of irrigation technologies," Agricultural Economics of Agricultural Economists, International Association of Agricultural Economists, vol. 6(4), April.
  7. Dinar, A. & Subramanian, A., 1997. "Water Pricing Experiences," Papers 386, World Bank - Technical Papers.
  8. Dinar, Ariel & Yaron, Dan, 1992. "Adoption and abandonment of irrigation technologies," Agricultural Economics, Blackwell, vol. 6(4), pages 315-332, April.
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