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ECONOMIC GROWTH IN COLOMBIA: A REVERSAL OF ‘FORTUNE’?

Mauricio Cardenas ()

Revista ESPE - Ensayos sobre Política Económica, 2007, vol. 25, issue 53, No 53, 220-259

Abstract: Since 1979, Colombia’s annual GDP growth has been on average two percentage points lower than what was observed between 1950 and 1980. The sources-of-growth decomposition shows that this deceleration can be accounted entirely by changes in productivity. Indeed, between 1960 and 1980 productivity gains increased output per worker by nearly 1% per year. Since 1980, productivity losses have reduced output per worker at about the same rate. The time series analysis suggests that the implosion of productivity was caused by the increase in criminality which diverted capital and labor to unproductive activities. In turn, the rise in crime was the result of rapid expansion in drug-traffi cking activities, which erupted around 1980. Consequently, the fortunes associated with the emergence of Colombia as the world largest producer of cocaine had a signifi cantly negative effect on growth and productivity. This explanation is supported by cross-country evidence that shows that Colombia’s underperformance, especially in the 1990s, is explained by its high homicide rate.

Keywords: Economic growth; productivity; social capital; crime and confl ict. (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: Z13 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2007
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Related works:
Journal Article: ECONOMIC GROWTH IN COLOMBIA: A REVERSAL OF ‘FORTUNE’? (2007) Downloads
Working Paper: Economic growth in Colombia: a reversal of "fortune"? (2007) Downloads
Working Paper: Economic growth in Colombia: A reversal of Fortune (2002) Downloads
Working Paper: Economic Growth in Colombia: A Reversal of 'Fortune'? (2001) Downloads
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