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The Size of the Government and Economic Growth: An Empirical Study of Sri Lanka

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  • Shanaka Herath

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Abstract

The new growth theory establishes, among other things, that government expenditure can manipulate economic growth of a country. This study attempts to explain whether government expenditure increases or decreases economic growth in the context of Sri Lanka. Results obtained applying an analytical framework based on time series and second degree polynomial regressions are generally consistent with previous findings: government expenditure and economic growth are positively correlated; excessive government expenditure is negatively correlated with economic growth; and an open economy promotes growth. In a separate section, the paper examines Armey’s (1995) idea of a quadratic curve that explains the level of government expenditure in an economy and the corresponding level of economic growth. The findings confirm the possibility of constructing the Armey curve for Sri Lanka, and it estimates the optimal level of government expenditure to be approximately 27 per cent. This paper adds to the literature indicating that the Armey curve is a reality not only for developed economies, but also for developing economies.
(This abstract was borrowed from another version of this item.)

Suggested Citation

  • Shanaka Herath, 2009. "The Size of the Government and Economic Growth: An Empirical Study of Sri Lanka," SRE-Disc sre-disc-2009_08, Institute for Multilevel Governance and Development, Department of Socioeconomics, Vienna University of Economics and Business.
  • Handle: RePEc:wiw:wiwsre:sre-disc-2009_08
    as

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    File URL: http://www-sre.wu.ac.at/sre-disc/sre-disc-2009_08.pdf
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. repec:eco:journ1:2017-04-73 is not listed on IDEAS
    2. Facchini, François & Melki, Mickaël, 2013. "Efficient government size: France in the 20th century," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 31(C), pages 1-14.
    3. R.A.Susantha Kumara Ranasinghe & Ichihashi Masaru, 2014. "The Composition of Government Expenditure and Economic Growth : The Case of Sri Lanka," IDEC DP2 Series 4-7, Hiroshima University, Graduate School for International Development and Cooperation (IDEC).
    4. repec:rss:jnljef:v3i2p1 is not listed on IDEAS
    5. LONZO LUBU, Gastonfils, 2014. "Taille Optimale De L’Etat En Rd Congo
      [Optimal Size Of Government In The Democratic Republic Of Congo]
      ," MPRA Paper 60715, University Library of Munich, Germany.

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • C32 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Multiple or Simultaneous Equation Models; Multiple Variables - - - Time-Series Models; Dynamic Quantile Regressions; Dynamic Treatment Effect Models; Diffusion Processes; State Space Models
    • F43 - International Economics - - Macroeconomic Aspects of International Trade and Finance - - - Economic Growth of Open Economies
    • H50 - Public Economics - - National Government Expenditures and Related Policies - - - General

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