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Trade Liberalization, Agricultural Productivity and Poverty in the Mediterranean Region

Nadia Belhaj Hassine () and Magda Kandil ()

No 415, Working Papers from Economic Research Forum

Abstract: A widely held view in the economic literature is that productivity growth is an important pathway through which trade liberalization affects the poor. This paper explores the links between trade openness, agricultural productivity, growth and poverty reduction in a panel of Mediterranean countries involved in global market liberalization. The mpirical results lend strong support to the view that agricultural productivity is an important channel for poverty alleviation. The findings illustrate the positive effects of openness on the rate of farming productivity and the speed of catching up with the best practice technology. Overall, the findings support the benefits of trade liberalization in the Mediterranean region, but suggest that the positive outcomes are contingent on complementary efforts.

Pages: 36
Date: 2008-01-06, Revised 2008-01-06
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