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Aid and Growth in Sub-Saharan Africa: Accounting for Transmission Mechanisms

  • Gomanee, Karuna
  • Girma, Sourafel
  • Morrissey, Oliver

This paper is a contribution to the literature on aid and growth. Despite an extensive empirical literature in this area, existing studies have not addressed directly the mechanisms via which aid should affect growth. We identify investment as the most significant transmission mechanism, and also consider effects through financing imports and government consumption spending. With the use of residual generated regressors, we achieve a measure of the total effect of aid on growth, accounting for the effect via investment. Pooled panel results for a sample of 25 Sub-Saharan African countries over the period 1970 to 1997 point to a significant positive effect of foreign aid on growth, ceteris paribus. On average, each one percentage point increase in the aid|GNP ratio contributes one-quarter of one percentage point to the growth rate. Africa's poor growth record should not therefore be attributed to aid ineffectiveness. Copyright © 2005 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

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File URL: http://www.wider.unu.edu/stc/repec/pdfs/rp2005/rp2005-60.pdf
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Paper provided by World Institute for Development Economic Research (UNU-WIDER) in its series Working Paper Series with number RP2005/60.

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Length: 26 pages
Date of creation: 2005
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:unu:wpaper:rp2005-60
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  1. Jan Willem Gunning & Paul Collier, 1999. "Explaining African Economic Performance," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 37(1), pages 64-111, March.
  2. Dollar, David & Easterly, William, 1999. "The search for the key : aid, investment, and policies in Africa," Policy Research Working Paper Series 2070, The World Bank.
  3. Gomanee, Karuna & Girma, Sourafel & Morrissey, Oliver, 2005. "Aid and Growth in Sub-Saharan Africa: Accounting for Transmission Mechanisms," Working Paper Series RP2005/60, World Institute for Development Economic Research (UNU-WIDER).
  4. Dalgaard, Carl-Johan & Hansen, Henrik & Tarp, Finn, 2002. "On the Empirics of Foreign Aid and Growth," MPRA Paper 63696, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  5. Bacha, Edmar L., 1990. "A three-gap model of foreign transfers and the GDP growth rate in developing countries," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 32(2), pages 279-296, April.
  6. Guillaumont, Patrick & Jeanneney, Sylviane Guillaumont & Brun, Jean-Francois, 1999. "How Instability Lowers African Growth," Journal of African Economies, Centre for the Study of African Economies (CSAE), vol. 8(1), pages 87-107, March.
  7. Michael Clemens & Steven Radelet & Rikhil Bhavnani, 2004. "Counting Chickens When They Hatch: The Short-term Effect of Aid on Growth," Working Papers 44, Center for Global Development.
  8. Alesina, Alberto, et al, 1996. " Political Instability and Economic Growth," Journal of Economic Growth, Springer, vol. 1(2), pages 189-211, June.
  9. Hansen, Henrik & Tarp, Finn, 2001. "Aid and growth regressions," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 64(2), pages 547-570, April.
  10. David Dollar & Craig Burnside, 2000. "Aid, Policies, and Growth," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 90(4), pages 847-868, September.
  11. Lensink, Robert & Morrissey, Oliver, 1999. "Aid instability as a measure of uncertainty and the positive impact of aid on growth," CDS Research Reports 199906, University of Groningen, Centre for Development Studies (CDS).
  12. R. Lensink & H. White, 2001. "Are There Negative Returns to Aid?," Journal of Development Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 37(6), pages 42-65.
  13. Pagan, Adrian, 1984. "Econometric Issues in the Analysis of Regressions with Generated Regressors," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 25(1), pages 221-47, February.
  14. Patrick GUILLAUMONT & Lisa CHAUVET, 1999. "Aid and Performance: A Reassessment," Working Papers 199910, CERDI.
  15. Easterly, William, 1999. "The ghost of financing gap: testing the growth model used in the international financial institutions," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 60(2), pages 423-438, December.
  16. Roubini, Nouriel & Swagel, Phillip & Ozler, Sule & Alesina, Alberto, 1996. "Political Instability and Economic Growth," Scholarly Articles 4553024, Harvard University Department of Economics.
  17. A. P. Thirlwall, 2003. "Trade, the Balance of Payments and Exchange Rate Policy in Developing Countries," Books, Edward Elgar, number 2957, July.
  18. Karuna Gomanee & Sourafel Girma & Oliver Morrissey, 2005. "Aid, public spending and human welfare: evidence from quantile regressions," Journal of International Development, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 17(3), pages 299-309.
  19. Gomanee, Karuna & Morrissey, Oliver & Mosley, Paul & Verschoor, Arjan, 2005. "Aid, Government Expenditure, and Aggregate Welfare," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 33(3), pages 355-370, March.
  20. Joshua Greene & Delano Villanueva, 1991. "Private Investment in Developing Countries: An Empirical Analysis," IMF Staff Papers, Palgrave Macmillan, vol. 38(1), pages 33-58, March.
  21. Robert Lensink & Oliver Morrissey, 2000. "Aid instability as a measure of uncertainty and the positive impact of aid on growth," Journal of Development Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 36(3), pages 31-49.
  22. repec:cup:cbooks:9780521608275 is not listed on IDEAS
  23. Gyimah-Brempong, Kwabena & Traynor, Thomas L, 1999. "Political Instability, Investment and Economic Growth in Sub-Saharan Africa," Journal of African Economies, Centre for the Study of African Economies (CSAE), vol. 8(1), pages 52-86, March.
  24. Oliver Morrissey, 2004. "Conditionality and Aid Effectiveness Re-evaluated," The World Economy, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 27(2), pages 153-171, 02.
  25. repec:cup:cbooks:9780521845731 is not listed on IDEAS
  26. Englebert, Pierre, 2000. "Solving the Mystery of the AFRICA Dummy," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 28(10), pages 1821-1835, October.
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