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Pollution And Welfare In The Presence Of Informal Sector: Is There Any Trade-Off?

  • Sarbajit Chaudhuri

    (Dept. of Economics, Calcutta University, India)

We present a three-sector general equilibrium model with an informal sector, which produces an intermediary for the formal sector, and analyze the effects of different policies on the environmental standard and welfare of the economy. Since the informal manufacturing sector creates pollution, higher the use of informal sector product, higher is the pollution created and higher the discrepancy between actual and permissible levels of pollution, so that the emission tax payable by the formal sector is also higher. The efficiency of a representative worker is inversely related to the level of pollution. In this setup, we show that even if the permissible level of pollution is reduced, the polluting sector may expand and worsen the environmental standard. However, this policy may be welfare improving. On the other hand, an inflow of foreign capital may reduce the pollution level but affect welfare adversely. The paper finds that there might exist a trade-off between the economy’s twin objectives of lowering the level of pollution and improving national welfare. These results are new in the trade and environment literature.

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Paper provided by EconWPA in its series Others with number 0510012.

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Length: 25 pages
Date of creation: 20 Oct 2005
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:wpa:wuwpot:0510012
Note: Type of Document - pdf; pages: 25
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  1. Sarbajit Chaudhuri, 2003. "How and how far to liberalize a developing economy with informal sector and factor market distortions," The Journal of International Trade & Economic Development, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 12(4), pages 403-428.
  2. Findlay, Ronald, 1978. "Relative Backwardness, Direct Foreign Investment, and the Transfer of Technology: A Simple Dynamic Model," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 92(1), pages 1-16, February.
  3. Hamid Beladi & Sugata Marjit, 1992. "Foreign Capital and Protectionism," Canadian Journal of Economics, Canadian Economics Association, vol. 25(1), pages 233-38, February.
  4. Gupta, Manash Ranjan, 1997. "Foreign Capital and the Informal Sector: Comments," Economica, London School of Economics and Political Science, vol. 64(254), pages 353-63, May.
  5. Harris, John R & Todaro, Michael P, 1970. "Migration, Unemployment & Development: A Two-Sector Analysis," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 60(1), pages 126-42, March.
  6. Grinols, Earl L, 1991. "Unemployment and Foreign Capital: The Relative Opportunity Costs of Domestic Labour and Welfare," Economica, London School of Economics and Political Science, vol. 58(229), pages 107-21, February.
  7. Koizumi, Tetsunori & Kopecky, Kenneth J., 1977. "Economic growth, capital movements and the international transfer of technical knowledge," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 7(1), pages 45-65, February.
  8. Cole, William E & Sanders, Richard D, 1985. "Internal Migration and Urban Employment in the Third World," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 75(3), pages 481-94, June.
  9. Chandra, Vandana & Khan, M Ali, 1993. "Foreign Investment in the Presence of an Informal Sector," Economica, London School of Economics and Political Science, vol. 60(237), pages 79-103, February.
  10. Manash Gupta, 1994. "Duty-free zone, unemployment, and welfare a note," Journal of Economics, Springer, vol. 59(2), pages 217-236, June.
  11. Beladi, Hamid & Marjit, Sugata, 1992. "Foreign capital, unemployment and national welfare," Japan and the World Economy, Elsevier, vol. 4(4), pages 311-317, December.
  12. Brecher, Richard A. & Diaz Alejandro, Carlos F., 1977. "Tariffs, foreign capital and immiserizing growth," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 7(4), pages 317-322, November.
  13. Marjit, Sugata, 2003. "Economic reform and informal wage--a general equilibrium analysis," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 72(1), pages 371-378, October.
  14. Blackman, Allen & Bannister, Geoffrey, 1997. "Community Pressure and Clean Technologies in the Informal Sector: An Econometric Analysis of the Adoption of Propane by Traditional Brickmakers in Ciudad Juarez, Mexico," Discussion Papers dp-97-16-rev, Resources For the Future.
  15. Manash Gupta, 1998. "Foreign capital and technology transfer in a dynamic model," Journal of Economics, Springer, vol. 67(1), pages 75-92, February.
  16. Khan, M. Ali, 1982. "Tariffs, foreign capital and immiserizing growth with urban unemployment and specific factors of production," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 10(2), pages 245-256, April.
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