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Corruption, the business environment, and small business growth in India

  • Honorati, Maddalena
  • Mengistae, Taye

This paper estimates a dynamic business growth equation on a sample of small-scale manufacturers. The results suggest that excessive labor regulation, power shortages, and problems of access to finance are significant influences on industrial growth in India. The expected annual sales growth rate of an enterprise is lower where labor regulation is greater, power shortages are more severe, and cash flow constraints are stronger. The effects of each of the three factors on business growth seem also to depend on a fourth element, namely, corruption. Specifically, labor regulation affects the growth only of enterprises for which corruption is not a factor in business decisions. By contrast, power shortages seem to be a drag on the growth only of enterprises self-reportedly held back by corruption. Lastly, sales growth is constrained by cash flow only in businesses that are not affected by labor regulation, power shortages, or corruption. The analysis uses corruption as a proxy for the quality of"property rights institutions"and considers labor regulation and small business financing as instances of"contracting institutions."The findings on the interaction between corruption and other aspects of business environment then seems to indicate that the quality of property rights institutions exerts more abiding influence on economic outcomes than the quality of contracting institutions. Moreover, there might also be a hierarchy among contracting institutions in their effect on manufacturing growth.

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Paper provided by The World Bank in its series Policy Research Working Paper Series with number 4338.

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Date of creation: 01 Aug 2007
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Handle: RePEc:wbk:wbrwps:4338
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  1. Ronald Oaxaca, 1971. "Male-Female Wage Differentials in Urban Labor Markets," Working Papers 396, Princeton University, Department of Economics, Industrial Relations Section..
  2. Arellano, Manuel & Bond, Stephen, 1991. "Some Tests of Specification for Panel Data: Monte Carlo Evidence and an Application to Employment Equations," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 58(2), pages 277-97, April.
  3. R Blundell & Steven Bond, . "Initial conditions and moment restrictions in dynamic panel data model," Economics Papers W14&104., Economics Group, Nuffield College, University of Oxford.
  4. Dollar, David & Hallward-Driemeier, Mary & Mengistae, Taye, 2005. "Investment Climate and Firm Performance in Developing Economies," Economic Development and Cultural Change, University of Chicago Press, vol. 54(1), pages 1-31, October.
  5. Stephen Bond & Julie Ann Elston & Jacques Mairesse & Beno�t Mulkay, 2003. "Financial Factors and Investment in Belgium, France, Germany, and the United Kingdom: A Comparison Using Company Panel Data," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 85(1), pages 153-165, February.
  6. Honorati, Maddalena & Mengistae, Taye, 2007. "Corruption, business environment, and small business fixed investment in India," Policy Research Working Paper Series 4356, The World Bank.
  7. Bond, Stephen & Meghir, Costas, 1994. "Dynamic Investment Models and the Firm's Financial Policy," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 61(2), pages 197-222, April.
  8. Alan S. Blinder, 1973. "Wage Discrimination: Reduced Form and Structural Estimates," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 8(4), pages 436-455.
  9. Daron Acemoglu & Simon Johnson, 2003. "Unbundling Institutions," NBER Working Papers 9934, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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