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Cotton policy in SSA: a matter of institutional arrangements related to farmers' constraints

Michel Fok ()
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Michel Fok: UPR SCA - Systèmes de Cultures Annuelles - Cirad - Centre de Coopération Internationale en Recherche Agronomique pour le Développement

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Abstract: Cotton production in the Francophone African Countries (FACs) derives exclusively from smallholders whose holding size is less than 5 ha on average. From the 1990s, the FACs are globally ranking third to second in exporting cotton to the world market. Such an achievement could be regarded as the result of an institutional construction which took place for four decades in dealing with the smallholders' constraints and concerns. Since the mid-1990s, the FACs are engaged into processes of privatization/liberalization, at distinct modalities, within the implementation of globalization-oriented policies. Drastic changes are now observed in pricing mechanisms, provision of inputs and credit to farmers...etc. These changes imply modifications in the responsibilities sharing between stakeholders, with modalities which are implying sometimes disharmony and uncertainty within the sector. This is an illustration of the construction-feature of new institutional arrangements which can hardly be automatically acceptable to all. The paper provides an analysis of the institutional construction in dealing with few major constraints or concerns faced by the smallholders in the FACs.

Keywords: Globalization; institutional arrangement; liberalization; cotton; history; Mondialisation; arrangement institutionnel; libéralisation; coton; histoire (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2008-05-14
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Published in ISSCRI International Conference "Rationales and evolutions of cotton policies", May 2008, Montpellier, France

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